FCT minister advocates enlightenment, education campaigns on mental health

FCT Minister Mohammed Bello

The FCT minister, Malam Muhammad Bello, has urged the Association of Psychiatrist in Nigeria to embark on public enlightenment and education campaigns on issues of mental health, especially in the cases of drugs abuse, depression and suicide.

Represented by Dr Mohammed Kawu, the acting secretary of FCT Health and Human Services Secretariat, Bello gave the advice at the 52 Annual General Scientific Meeting (AGSM), Abuja 2021, of the association, held Tuesday in Abuja.
The theme of the AGSM was, ” Mental Health and National Development in Nigeria: A call for action.”
The minister stated that mental health in Nigeria was often not given the prominence it deserves because patients and their families usually choose not to speak out or seek professional help for fear of stigmatisation.

He said: ” It is therefore imperative that your association embark on public sensitisation campaign to shed more light on the issues of mental health.
” Your theme for this gathering which is ‘Mental Health and National Development in Nigeria: A call to Action’ is therefore very timely, and germane.

” I will therefore like to underscore the importance of this meeting which has brought together leading psychiatrist from within and outside the country.
” There is no doubt that this gathering will advance the frontiers of psychiatrist practice in Nigeria,” Bello said.
Earlier, the president of the association, Prof. Taiwo Sheikh, said the national development of any country rests on the well being of its citizens.

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