The Lagos State Government on Friday welcomed the first babies of the year in four state-owned health facilities in the state.
The health facilities include Mushin General Hospital, Alimosho General Hospital, Orile Agege General Hospital and Ayinke House located at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja.
Baby Amoo, a male who weighed 3kg delivered at exactly 12:01 am by Mrs. Tomilola Amao, was the first baby of the year at Mushin General Hospital.
Another baby, a male who weighed 4.35kg and delivered at 2:38 am by Mrs. Onumba Foluke was the first baby of the year at Alimosho General Hospital.
Also, baby Ajayi, a girl, who weighed 2.35kg and delivered at 12:01 am by Mrs. Abosede Ajayi, is the first baby of the year at Orile-Agege General Hospital, while the first baby of the year at the Lagos State University Teaching Hospital, Ikeja was baby Adesola-Fagade. The baby weighed 3.3kg and was delivered at 12.21 am to the family of Mr. and Mrs. Adesola-Fagade.
Wife of the Lagos State Governor, Dr. Ibijoke Sanwo-Olu, who was at these hospitals to celebrate the arrival of the newborn babies stated that the birth of a child, for most people, symbolises the assurance that our heritage and life force is carried on to the next generation.
“As with a lot of cultures, not just in Yorubaland but across the world, the birth of a child brings good fortune to a society. But we must recognise that these events do not happen by chance.
“Just as the birth of a healthy baby requires that the mother takes steps to ensure that she lives a healthy life whilst pregnant and gets skilled care during labour and delivery, we must also play our part to ensure that we live the kind of life that will promote our own welfare and the well-being of our society,” she said.
The State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, said the baby of the Year programme was a symbolic event.
Abayomi, who was represented by the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry, Dr. Olusegun Ogboye, said, “For us in the Ministry of Health, the First Baby of the Year is a symbolic event.
“As a state, the very first activity of the government every year is seen to focus on health care. Its significance is demonstrated by the priority it is given, with the visit of the wife of our Governor and the many important dignitaries, who could have been elsewhere, but have chosen to spend their first few hours of the new year here in our public hospitals.
“They make it a duty to be here to rejoice with our mothers on the birth of their children and that, in itself, speaks volumes.
“It is worth stating that the Ministry of Health is saddled with the responsibility of ensuring that our residents have access to services that promote health and wellbeing. And part of its obligations is to strengthen structures, improve programmes and expand services that help reduce neonatal and infant mortality and ensure safe motherhood.
“As such, events like this give our dignitaries the chance to evaluate where we are, as against the year before and recognise opportunities to create partnerships that can further improve service outcomes.”