The Chairman of Stop TB Partnership Nigeria, Prof Lovett Lawson, has said that the federal government will need about N111.6bn, to put an end to the scourge of Tuberculosis in the country by 2030.
Lawson noted that Lagos state has the highest burden of tuberculosis in Nigeria due to the challenges posed by high population density, high congregate settings and concentration of politics.
He stressed that if TB must become a thing of the past, there was a need to explore other sources of funding, especially from corporate organisations and rich individuals.
Lawson stated this in Abuja at a briefing held ahead of the 2019 national TB conference, with the theme: ‘Building stronger partnerships to end TB in Nigeria.’
He said: “Funding from the Federal Government and international donors for the control of this deadly disease, unfortunately, has been grossly inadequate. The country needs 76 per cent more funding for tuberculosis control, compared to the current funding level if we are to end the disease in 2030.
“Nigeria needs over $310m to end tuberculosis. The government is not willing to fund that much. Other sources of funding are thus required, if Nigeria is to meet this target. “Very little has been done to involve corporate, financial and oil and gas sectors as done in other countries, to make up the difference in funding. We need that in Nigeria to move some of their money into tuberculosis control.”
Lawson stated that while 1.6 million people afflicted with tuberculosis die, about 8 to 10 million new cases were diagnosed each year.
He said that each patient was capable of infecting between 10 and 15 persons yearly. Lawson maintained that the rate of TB decline, which was currently about 1.5 per cent, would have to increase dramatically to about 10 percent globally by the year 2025, in order to meet the 2030 target of ending TB worldwide.