By Tony Adibe
At least 1,000 residents of Ojiagu community in Agbani area of Enugu State have been given comprehensive free medical care by the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) on Tuesday.
The medical care, which is part of activities marking the 59th Anniversary of NAF, featured various forms of treatments for the aged, adult and children within the community as well as referral for critical medical conditions.
The NAF medical outreach also came with some free health/medical consumables, which included: 50 eyeglasses and eye drops, 150 toothbrushes and toothpastes, 100 packs of worn expellers (tablets and liquid suspension for children) among others.
Flagging off the medical outreach, the Air Officer Commanding (AOC), NAF Ground Training Command, AVM Sayo Olatunde, said that the exercise was in line with the NAF Corporate Social Responsibility to her host community.
Olatunde said that it would also enhance civil-military relations between NAF and the host community. He said that the medical outreach would cover vital health awareness talk and advise to the people as well as free medical test, clinical consultations, and drugs.
The AOC said: “We are here to provide free medical test, clinical consultation, and drugs for ailments such as malaria, hypertension, diabetes, eye infection, bronchial asthma, peptic ulcer, and de-worming of all children.
“Our health experts on ground will also treat respiratory infections, urinary tract infections as well as do laboratory investigations such as random blood sugar test and voluntary HIV counseling and test; dental consultation and medical surgery for minor health issues”.
In his reaction, the Traditional Ruler of Ojiagu Community, Igwe Umunnabuike Ejim, appreciated the NAF for bringing comprehensive and free healthcare to his people, adding: “Health is wealth; and a healthy community is a wealthy community”.
Ejim said: “The Nigerian Air Force have been good neighbours to us, and we enjoy their closeness to us as well as mutual respect and trust we have built with them in the course of the years.
“The medical outreach we are enjoying today as a community is one way the Federal Government through the Nigerian Air Force is providing dividends of democracy and good governance directly to our people. We quite appreciate them and before now, we have mobilised our people numbering over 1,000 to be here today. Very soon they will be troop in in their hundreds after visiting their farms this morning”.
The traditional ruler, however, urged NAF authorities to please admit more of their children to the NAF Comprehensive School, Agbani, adding that it would be good that the community benefit from the high academic standards of the school as well.
One of the beneficiaries of the free medical outreach, Mrs Esther Nnamani, who got free eyeglasses and eye drops, thanked NAF for using the exercise to take away the financial burden of visiting an eye consultant, buying an eye glass and its accompanying eye drops.
“My son, Nnaemeka, also got free malaria drugs and de-worming medicine as well. The Nigerian Air Force has done so much for my family today and I pray God to continue to bless them,” Nnamani said.
Another beneficiary, Pa Okechukwu Okam, thanked NAF for the free medical advice for him to cut down on his carbohydrate intake, eat more of vegetables, fruits and protein as well as have good rest.
“After the advise, they also give me this large quantum of drugs free-of-charge for me to take care of myself. I am happy and I pray that Nigerian Air Force medical team keep coming regularly to our community,” Okam, who is over 80 years, said.