The Dean, Faculty of Pure and Applied Sciences, Kwara State University (KWASU), Professor Emmanuel Oladipo Ajani has appealed to the Federal Government to attach utmost attention to the incorporation of the Traditional Medical Practices into the Orthodox health care system in order to actively address health emergencies and achieve universal health coverage in Nigeria.
Professor Ajani made this submission in his inaugural lecture titled “Man Versus Diseases: The Green Remedy” held at the University Convocation Arena (CVA) on Wednesday (May 18, 2022).
Vice Chancellor Prof. Muhammed Mustapha Akanbi SAN presenting award of excellence to Prof. E. O. Ajani shortly after the lecture
Ajani, who is the Professor of Biochemistry, posited strongly that Nigeria has the potential to join the league of countries with leading health care delivery, if we make deliberate efforts to maximize the medicinal potentials of many floras that exist in the country.
“I wish to submit here that for Nigeria to truly eliminate a number of diseases by the year 2030, ensure healthy lives through promotion of well-being for people at all ages, achieve universal health coverage (UHC), address health emergencies and promote healthier populations (Sustainable Development Goal 3), closer attention must be paid to phytopharmacology” he said.
“One of the main policies of Nigerian Traditional medicine practice is to develop the mechanism for incorporating traditional medicine into the health care delivery system. However, since 2007, when this policy was formulated, no serious measure has been put in place for it’s realization. It is important to put this policy into effect now. This also should be done in line with patient’s choices, expectations and consistency with evidence on quality, safety and effectiveness” he added.
According to him, Nigerians government established the National Institute for Pharceutica Research and Development, Idu, Abuja in 2989, pointing out that it is unfortunate that the institute has not made the much expected impact in natural product development.
Said he, “my personal experience with the institute showed that if we’ll supported, it has the capacity to translate Nigeria to a country that will not just be a dumping ground for less potent drugs, but rather be in a better position to develop more potent drugs from our endowed natural resources”.
Professor Ajani further recommended aggressive researches in natural products development, which he said requires advanced analytical techniques.
He said the techniques will make it possible to elucidate the molecular structures of complex natural products and make available valuable lead compounds and new drugs.
“My appeal is to the Kwara State Government through bits relevant agencies to facilitate the development of these techniques in Kwara State University through provision of Bioinformatics and Computational Biology Laboratory, equipped with modern necessary softwares such as Scaffold Hunter software, PASS software, SPIDER software, e.t.c’ he Ajani said.
He also recommended the management and conservation of Nigerian indigenous plants, saying that many plants that are of medicinal importance are already going into extinction as a result of industrial development, pointing out that development of a compendium of indigenous plants with potential and clinical benefits is highly recommended.
Professor Ajani also recommended a collaborative research among various specialties, cutting across universities, pharmaceutical companies and research institutes.
He therefore commended the management of the Kwara State University for floating a Center for Complimementary Alternative Therapy (CAT), saying that the idea is to incorporate traditional medical into Orthodox medicine in KWASU.
Faces at the inaugural lecture