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Lawmaker restates Senate’s commitment to the mental health of Nigerians

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Rules and Business, Sadiq Umar, has expressed the commitment of the National Assembly to the mental health of Nigerians.

Mr Umar, representing Kwara North in the red chamber, said this while responding to questions from journalists at the national briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 on Tuesday. The briefing aired on Channels Television was monitored by POLITICS NIGERIA.

“Distinguished Senator Ibrahim Oloriegbe recently sponsored a new bill on mental health that has passed the first reading. It has passed the second ready and is referred to the committee for the final preparation to be passed,” Mr Umar said.

He noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has hindered the public hearing of the bill.

“Mentally health is equally as important to us in the Senate. The other distinguished Senator Shettima also brought a bill on mental health which has passed the first reading.”

“So, be rest assured that mental health concerns will be robustly taking care of by the 9th National Assembly.” he disclosed. Mr Umar acknowledged that the mental health problem is a multi-dimensional issue with emotional, economic and superstitious perspectives.

“The society has a role to play in that, good governance has a role to play in that…” He added.

Meanwhile, in his address, the Chairman of the PTF, Boss Mustapha, appreciated the presence of Mr Umar and the support enjoined from other members of the Senate.

“We thank you for the measure of support that has been extended to this PTF.”

Mr Mustapha also announced the decision of the Public Relation Consultant Association of Nigeria (PRCAN) to enhance the risk communication strategy of the PTF for free.

“The presidential task force appreciate this offer and look forward to the improvement with its community engagement strategy.”

The Chairman, however, advised Nigerians to care for the elderly, the sick, people living with disabilities, pregnant women, the vulnerable and the poor during the pandemic. “We must avoid stigmatization, consider the mental health of those affected and offer necessary support for those who are struggling with the disease help,” he said.

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