By Fasilat Lawal

Persons affected by leprosy want the government to lead the campaign against the stigmatization of people with the disease. 

Program Officer, the Leprosy Mission Nigeria, Kwara State, Mr Muyiwa Nafiu made the call in commemoration of this year’s, World Leprosy Day in Ibadan.

He explained that discrimination against persons afflicted by leprosy and their families had remained a major challenge.

Mr Nafiu urged Nigerians to erase the belief that the disease is contagious and hereditary stressing that it is one of the Neglected Tropical Diseases, NTDs, caused by bacteria.

He called on people to seek early care if they suspect or see any signs of leprosy, saying the disease is curable and treatment is free at government facilities.

Mr Nafiu, therefore, appealed to governments at all levels to create adequate awareness of leprosy in the country as people are still contracting it and also give necessary support to those affected.

World Leprosy Day is observed on the last day Sunday of January annually to create awareness about the disease.

This year’s theme is, “Act Now End Leprosy”.

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