(By Adebayo Folorunsho-Francis)
In a show of recognition and appreciation, about 22 organisations, individuals and corporate sponsors were given various awards at the 9thAfribaby Babycare and Mothercare Expo.
The colourful event which took place within the premises of the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LASUTH), Ikeja, Lagos on 15 April, witnessed a massive turnout of nursing mothers and their babies.
The event was also graced by a number of dignitaries, including Governor BabatundeFashola of Lagos State; Prof. Adenike Grange, former health minister; HajiaBintu-Fatima Tinubu, Iyalode of Lagos; Chief (Dr.) MoladeOkoya-Thomas, Asoju Oba of Lagos; Chief AbimbolaElegunde-Dosunmu, Erelu of Lagos; Dr. Dorothy Esangbedo, consultant paediatrician, LASUTH; and Prof. AdewaleOke, chief medical director, LASUTH.
Speaking at the event which also doubled as First Lady’s Babycare Award, Governor Fashola commended the participants for their active support of balanced motherhood, adding that children adequately breastfed would always turn out healthy.
“I see it as the best practice because it inevitably reflects the bond, love and uncommon connection between mother and child. It is something I think our women need to keep up,” he stated.
Buttressing this view, Prof. Oke of LASUTH, who reiterated that the primary purpose of the convergence was to celebrate the leaders of tomorrow, canvassed for exclusive breastfeeding, adding that it had no substitute.
Chairman of the Afribaby initiative, Chief Okoya-Thomas, recalled that several breastfeeding programmes and expo had been hosted in several cities within and outside the country for the past nine years. He also thanked Dame Abimbola Fashola and Dr. Oscar Odiboh and his wife, Olayinka, for supporting the project over the years.
The highpoint of the event was the presentation of recognition awards to partner individuals and organisations. Recipients include: Dr. Adenike Grange, Olori (Chief) Ayo Onisemo, Chief Okoya-Thomas (Trustees Award); Dr. Dorothy Esangbedo(Personality Award); Classic 93.7FM, The Punch Newspapers and Silverbird TV (Supportive Media Award); Northwest Petroleum, Wemy Industries, CFAO Motors, CFAO CICA and Gossy Waters (Corporate Sponsorship Award); and LASUTH (Best Supportive Institution Award).