By Ifeanyi Nwoko
In a bid to drive home the Global Health for All Challenge and combat non-communicable diseases, the Wellbeing Foundation Africa (WBFA) in collaboration with the WHO embarked on a 7.2 km walk in the FCT.
The walk was led by Mrs Toyin Saraki, Founder President of the WBFA and World Health Organization Representative, Head of Mission in Nigeria, Dr Wondi Alemu and in partnership with the ministry of Youths and Sports Development.
The walk was aimed at promoting healthy lifestyle practices towards the Africa Health Transformation Agenda of the World Health Organisation.
Over 2000 people who participated in the walk which started from the Millennium Park in Abuja, went through major streets distributing handbills to people and motorists.
Tagged Abuja Walk the Talk, stakeholders were invited to walk run or dance along a 7.6 kilometer route road walk to promote healthy lifestyles and a healthy populace.
Other participants include: Chief Executive Officer, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu; representative of the Minister of Youths and Sports and other dignitaries.
Speaking at the end of the walk, Mrs Toyin Saraki expressed gratitude to the country office t=for collaborating with the Wellbeing Foundation in driving home the health for all initiative.
“It is the first time a country office of the WHO has actually done this walk, and the Wellbeing Foundation Africa is delighted to collaborate with the WHO to work towards Universal Health Coverage for all, especially in Nigeria.”
“To stay healthy, I believe everyone should have at least 35 minutes of walking three times a week, as this helps the cardiovascular system, especially with blood circulation.
“This years’ walk was wonderful with over 2,000 people turning out to partake in the 7.6km walk, and I hope that next year we will have over 20,000 people come out to participate.”
In his remarks, the WHO Country Representative, Dr Wondi Alemu said: “Exercise should continue on a personal basis, at least three times a week with a minimum duration of 30 minutes, all year round.
“This Abuja Walk the Talk road walk is an opportunity to get people to take exercising seriously and practice what we talk about with regards to frequent exercise for healthier life,” he said.
According to the WHO, globally 1 in 4 adults are not active enough, and insufficient physical activities is a key risk factor for non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes.