The wife of the Ondo state governor, Arabinrin Betty Anyanwu Akeredolu has re-emphasised the need for women not to die from breast cancer disease, saying there is nothing extra-ordinary about it.
Arabinrin Akeredolu, who is the founder of Breast Cancer Association of Nigeria, BRECAN, made the emphasis earlier today at the democracy motor park Akure, shortly after the 2019 Jog for Life breast cancer awareness campaign.
According to her, ignorance is one of the reasons some women died from the scourge, noting that breast cancer progresses with time and if women listen to campaign messages about it and engage in constant self-breast examination, there won’t be any mortality occurrence.
“BRECAN is citizens driven, to galvanise action against the disease through public education, raising awareness like what we’ve done this morning, patients support, advocacy and research.
“ What we have done today is one of the programmes of BRECAN to raise the consciousness of Nigerians about this disease that is killing our women needlessly; and it’s largely due to ignorance.
“ Our people are yet to understand what this disease is all about. Breast cancer is not spiritual attack for the women who are experiencing the disease or those who may experience it. I want to tell you loud and clear that it’s not a spiritual attack.
“What we are trying to convene now is that you need to be breast aware. And to be breast aware you need to know how your breasts look and feel like; and when you see anything unusual, do not delay, go to hospital”, she said.
Mrs. Akeredolu however lamented that despite the massive campaign against the scourge, some women were still being rushed to the hospital with already rotten breasts, noting that the survivors did the right thing at the right time, hence, the reason they survived.
“ When people say it is a death sentence, we are saying it’s not true. It’s because our women are not doing the right thing at the right time. They are not listening. There’s nobody that is not a child of God. The earlier we bring it down to the general discussion, the better”, she added.
According to her, the Jog for Life exercise which was the third edition in Ondo state is to raise awareness about the disease, to showcase the survivors and to raise funds in support of BRECAN’s mission.
She enjoined Nigerians to donate for the cause, saying that one doesn’t need to be a millionaire before contributing to humanitarian service.
The Lead Jogger, who is the Chairman of Odigbo Local government, Mrs. Margret Akinsuroju also emphasized the need cancer must not kill women again due to the constant advocacy campaign by the First Lady.
She advised women to practice regular self breast examination noting that it’s an avoidable death if they give their breasts enough attention.
The Coordinator of breast cancer Team Survivors Nigeria, Mrs. Funmi Oluwagbamila advised victims of the disease to identify with the team in order to gain hope of living, and charged women with unusual changes in their breasts not to stay indoor applying traditionally- made home remedies.
She therefore commended Mrs Akeredolu for the support she has offered and still offering to them in getting chemotherapy and surgeries through BRECAN.
Also speaking, the Executive Secretary of the Ondo State Primary Health care board, Dr. Francis Akanbiemu affirmed that women are not the only victims of breast cancer, noting that three percent of patients are men.
Other activities for the Jog for Life awareness campaign included dancing competition among the invited secondary schools, raffle draw where people won gifts varying from quality Ankara materials, solar lamp, solar charger and android phone, among others.