In Rivers USAID pledges $2million towards fight against HIV/AIDS

According to USAID Country Director, Dr Susan Coleman, the body has supported over 600,000 people in Nigeria, including in Rivers State, within 10 years of its existence in the country.

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There is a need to intensify effort in the fight against HIV/AIDS especially in rural areas, this is according to the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

USAID Country Director, Dr Susan Coleman, while leading a delegation from the Association for Reproductive and Family Health (ARFH) and Family Health International (FHI 360) on an advocacy visit to the Government House, Port Harcourt stated the need to step up control of the deadly scourge.

According to Coleman, USAID has supported over 600,000 people in Nigeria, including in Rivers State, within 10 years of its existence in the country.

She also stated that $2 million is budgeted for Rivers this year alone, noting that the agency has spent about $30 million in the state in its orphaned, vulnerable children programme within the period.

Deputy Rivers state governor, Dr. Ipalibo Harry Banigo, in response said the state government would ensure the success of the USAID programmes, as it is passionate about the welfare of vulnerable and orphaned children in the state and would do all it could to take them off the streets.

Banigo further added that the "important thing is not just that the programme will be successful but we will ensure its sustenance for the sake of the vulnerable children,”

He also stressed the need for proper monitoring of the programme, including stakeholders like the chairman, Local Government Service Commission, and those at the grassroots, to achieve set objectives.

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