* Dame Edith Okowa, wife of Delta State Governor.
The wife of the Delta State Governor and founder of the O5 initiative, Dame Edith Okowa, has commissioned the 12th Sickle Cell Clinic at the Government Hospital, Umunede in lka North East Local Government Area, in line with her choice of rendering selfless services to the needy in the state, even as she admonishes singles to ascertain genotype before marriage.
Dame Okowa at the ceremony disclosed that the establishment of sickle cell clinics in the state was part of her pet project O5 Initiative Health Programme which according to her focuses on the effective management of occasional distress associated with the sickle cell hereditary disorder.
She noted that the mission of the O5 Initiative was a complementary role to the prosperity agenda of the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa administration, saying that it was aimed at giving hope to the hopeless and transforming lives of the people of Delta State.
According to the wife of the governor, the 05 initiative had established and equipped 12 sickle cell clinics across the state, adding that as part of its commitment to bringing succour to the poor in the society, the O5 Initiative had a goal to establish the clinics in every government-owned hospital across the state.
She called on everyone aspiring to get married to ensure that they ascertained their blood statuses by undergoing all the necessary recommended tests and be properly counselled before getting married.
While commending the people of lka North East Local Government Area, who contributed towards the actualization of the project, she called on patients, caregivers and sufferers not to rest on their oars in the fight against the disease but that they should come together to ensure improved advocacy and support at all times.
In a goodwill message, the Commissioner for Health, Dr Mordi Ononye, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in the ministry, Dr Mini 0seji, disclosed that so far, a total of 2,388 sickle cell patients had been seen in 10 of the 11 commissioned clinics in 2018, adding that haemoglobin genotype had been determined for 3,575 persons in eight of the clinics since commissioning among others.
The occasion featured health talks on good nutritional food for healthy living by a medical laboratory official, Mrs Patience Emechete, and the management of sickle cell disorder by Mrs Joyce Emegha while one of the success and survival persons, Mr Francis Eluaka, a lawyer, appreciated Dame Okowa and other humanitarian Deltans for their kind gesture.