By; JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
In an effort to create more awareness on the scourge of breast cancer within communities, a coalition of three Bauchi based civil society organizations have commemorated this year’s October Cancer Month with a grand walk across major streets of Bauchi metropolis.
Addressing the marmot crowd that turned out for the over three kilometer walk, a Consultant with the Abubakar Tafawa Balewa University Teaching Hospital (ATBUTH) Dr. Adamu Bala Ningi talked on the need for prevention and early detection of breast cancer, saying that “greater percentage of deaths from breast cancer occurs in Africa and it is due to late detection of the scourge. Usually by the time the patient comes to the hospital, the cancer has spread and eventually leads to death even after surgery”.
In an interview with some of the organizers, the founder of Alheri YS Foundation, Miss. Alheri Yusuf Sarauta said the objective of commemorating the breast cancer month was to bring to limelight the need for women to always seek for medical attention the moment they notice anomalies in their breast.
She also dispute the myth that breast cancer cannot be cured pointing out that, “there are many survivors of breast cancer that are hale and hearty within our community. This was as result of the fact that the breast cancer was detected early enough by the victims and commenced medical treatment”.
Also speaking to our correspondent, the CEO and Founder of AABA Life Foundation (ALFO) Aisha Adam Bappa said that for the first time they (Coalition of CSOs) saw the need to organise the walk in addition to series of public lecture to commemorate the breast cancer month.
Bappa thanked those that participated in the walk and also urged them to be breast cancer awareness champions. She also reiterated the resolve of the coalition to key into all global activities that seeks to bring the issues around breast cancer on national discourse.
Also, in an interview with a breast cancer survivor Ms. Elizabeth Kah, she also reiterated the need for women to always check their breasts for any signs of lumps, especially after menstruation.
Kah also agreed that early detection and treatment still remains the best option for surviving breast cancer pointing that, “I was able to detect the lump in my breast early and seek for medical attention. Today, 19 years after my surgery, I am still alive, healthy and full of energy”.
Receiving the placard carrying crowd that terminated the walk at the Government house Bauchi, the State Governor Bala Mohammed commended the effort of the CSOs for the first ever awareness walk on breast cancer in the State describing it as historic.
Represented by the Secretary to the State Government, Barrister Ibrahim Kashim, the Governor expressed his appreciation for the thoughtfulness of the Youth for organising the breast cancer awareness campaign. He said the state government is committed to ensuring effective and efficient healthcare services in the State.
The breast cancer awareness walk which was held on the 31st October, 2022, was organised by three CSOs in Bauchi State, namely: Alheri YS Foundation, AABA Life Foundation (ALFO) and Barrister Ibrahim Kashim (BIK) Foundation.
Our correspondent reports that October of every year is being set aside globally to highlight issues around breast and cervical cancer with a view to giving victims hope and creating more awareness on prevention and early detection.