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Polio vaccination round ends in Mogadishu


Four new cases of polio were positively identified in Benadir region, in which Mogadishu is situated, in March and April, lending a degree of urgency to the three-day WHO and UNICEF polio vaccination programme completed in Mogadishu on Wednesday, a UN official told IRIN on Wednesday.

Those four cases bring to 11 the number of cases in Mogadishu alone since December, which was quite alarming, the official added.

After talks in Merka to explain to elders the seriousness of the situation, the vaccination programme - targeting 200,000 children under five years in Mogadishu - went ahead with the full participation of the community and the agreement of Somalia's clans and factions, a WHO official added.

It is proposed to have another round in the Mogadishu vaccination campaign in June.

The team working on this week's exercise, supervised by Dr Gianfranco Rotigliano of UNICEF and Dr Najivullah Mojadidi of WHO, had enjoyed considerable freedom of movement in the city and enjoyed the peaceful manner in which the programme was completed, according to media reports from Somalia.



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