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24.02.2006 Business & Finance

Ninety thousand houses to be sprayed at Obuasi

By GNA

Obuasi, Feb 24, GNA - Ninety thousand houses and office buildings in the Obuasi municipality and its surrounding villages are to be sprayed under the Obuasi Malaria Control Programme as from April 3. The Indoor Residual Spraying (IRS) programme, which would be for four-and-half months, is under an integrated comprehensive programme to reduce malaria cases in the municipality by 50 per cent within the next year.

Statistics indicate that malaria is the leading killer disease in the municipality with an average of 10,000 cases monthly. Mr Steve Knowles, Obuasi Malaria Control Programme Manager, announced this at a five-day indoor residual spraying training workshop for 20 trainers and supervisors at Obuasi.

Avima, a South African pesticide manufacturing company sponsored the workshop.

The topics discussed included general principles of spray application, integrated vector management and malaria profile and situation in the municipality.

Mr Knowles said to ensure the success of the programme; a 14-day intensive training would be organized for 116 persons recruited for the exercise to equip them with the needed skills that could keep them employed at chemical industries and other companies even after the programme.

The Programme Manager 134 jobs had been created for the local communities as a result of the programme.

"The malaria control programme is underway and what we need now is community acceptance, community involvement", Mr Knowles stressed, adding, "Let us all support the indoor residual spraying campaign". Mr Knowles commended the commitment of organisations in partnership with AngloGold Ashanti especially the Obuasi Municipal Assembly, the Municipal Director of Health Services, Dr Osei Somuah and officials of the National Malaria Control Programme to the programme. Mr James Frimpong, National Malaria Control Programme Officer for the Eastern, Ashanti and Brong-Ahafo regions, who was a participant, told the GNA that the Obuasi Malaria Control Programme was an initiative in the right direction.

"It is a good programme as it targets the mosquitoes that cause malaria directly", he said. Mr Frimpong added that it was a programme that had been tested elsewhere and seen to be effective, especially in epidemic prone countries like Eritrea.

He noted that the attitude of the communities would go a long way to determine the success of the programme and called for an attitudinal change among the people. 24 Feb 06

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