By Okosun Dennis

Over 200 Ado-Ajah indigenes on Tuesday benefited from the Nigerian Army’s free medical services as part of its Civil-Military Cooperation leveraging on the ongoing Exercise STILL WATERS III to reach out to the host community.

The beneficiaries appreciated 81 Division, Nigerian Army, under the leadership of Maj Gen Mohammed Usman, and the Medical team of 65 Battalion, Bonny Cantonment, Victoria Island, Lagos for the treatment of various ailments at the Ado Primary School, Ajah, Lagos.

In his remarks, Colonel Okechukwu Moses Azuoru, Commander, 81 Division Medical Services and Hospital, Dodan Barracks, Obalende, said the exercise aligns with the ongoing Operation STILL WATERS III.

In an interview with our correspondent, Col Azuoru explained that “Part of the total operation is medical outreach for communities we provide security for especially during the yuletide festivals, and Ajah is one of the communities earmarked to benefit this medical service this year.

“We embark on this to assist the community to detect some ailments and advise appropriately. We shall treat those we can handle here and for those that are beyond us, we shall refer to the appropriate medical facility.

“Apart from medical outreach, we also engage in providing various interventions like water through sinking of boreholes, solar powered street lights, building schools and other quick impact projects that affect positively our host communities as a way of cementing Civil-Military relationship for information and intelligence sharing to further secure the areas we are protecting,” Col Azuoru emphasized.

Earlier, the Commanding Officer, 65 Battalion, Bonny Cantonment, Victoria Island, Lt Col Mohammed Marwa noted with satisfaction, the turnout, adding that the medical rhapsody was not only done here but in other parts of the country by the Nigerian Army under the able leadership of the Chief of Army Staff, (COAS), Lt Gen Taoreed Lagbaja as part of their little way of giving back to their host community.

“We are here to see what we can do to alleviate their ailments during the ongoing Exercise STILL WATERS III.”

A representative of the Eti-osa Local Government, Dr. Oyebanji O. Oyenike, Medical Officer of Health, Etiosa Local Government Community Development Association (CDA), acknowledged the ingenuity of the Nigerian Army in assisting one of the five wards in the local government with robust medical assistance.

She added that the invaluable contributions to the medical needs of the people cannot be underestimated. “This is the first time I have experienced this from the military personnel and the quality of service delivery, consultations, and dispensing of drugs are superlative.

“I am immensely appreciative. Over 150 persons have benefited from this assistance from Dental care, Eye screening, Malaria treatment, varying degrees of tests, and other medical concerns.”

While appreciating the Nigerian Army, she observed that through their community assistance, the force has provided leadership and guidance noting that other philanthropic and Non-Governmental Organisations should emulate and exemplify.

She called on the Army authority that they are expecting more such assistance soon to cover other wards like Ogombo, Okun-Mopo, Sangotedo, and Badore.

While expressing their views, and satisfaction about the assistance, some of the beneficiaries applauded the army for their dexterity, care, and medical provision for the needy in the society.

To Comrade Omotosho Wasiu, he noted that before now, he used to take so many things for granted when it comes to self-medication and other hygiene factors but with the health talks he got from the army personnel, that has changed his orientation and disposition.

‘”I am glad that I was given health talks and de-wormed as well; a thing I haven’t done in the last three years. I thank the Nigerian Army for their support. This is massive assistance considering that drug prices have increased astronomically at various chemist shops.

Similarly, Gladys Kanu, a 72-year-old mother was overwhelmed with joy for the honour done to him by the Nigerian Army. “They have done marvelously well. I just bought a few things and saw them attending to people. I am amazed at the quality of treatment and drugs given to me. I have diabetes and High Blood Pressure. These drugs and the quality of doctors who attended to me are a testimony to the fact that the Nigerian Army cares for humanity.

During the period the treatment lasted, there were lectures by the Public Health department led by Warrant Officer Clement Eluamhe, Health Officer, 81 Division, Obalende. He took the beneficiaries through health talks, habits to desist from to mitigate contracting all kinds of infections as well as other health tips on varying areas of medical needs to stay healthy at all times.

Among those tips included admonishing them to observe personal hygiene by ensuring that they keep their environment and body clean; wash their clothes and cut their fingernails to avoid microorganisms from taking advantage.

On healthy food, he called on the beneficiaries to eat healthy food and fruits to stay alive. On the choice of cooking oil, he cautioned them to be mindful of the kind of cooking oil they buy in the market stressing that there are so many adulterated oil that are saturated with fats that clogs the arteries and veines capable of collapsing the body’s chemistry.

He called on them to ensure there was no stagnant water in their environment in order not to be susceptible to mosquito bites and other infectious and transmissible diseases.

About 200 Ado-Ajah indigenes were treated and given free drugs according to medical prescriptions. Beneficiaries had their vitals taken, High Blood Pressure, Sugar, and Malaria Tests. Other areas were Typhoid fever, Diabetes, Eyes, and Dental care, according to Captain Precious Ukpedor, Regimental Medical Officer, 65 Military Reception Station (MRS) reiterated.

Operation STILL WATERS III was flagged off by the Chief of Army Staff, Lt Gen Taoreed Lagbaja at Ibafo, Ogun state on the 10th of October 2023.

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