NAN) The United Nations
Fund for Population Activities (UNFPA) on
Saturday said about 800,000 women suffered
from Vesico Vaginal Fistula ( VVF) annually in
The Country Representative of the fund in Nigeria,
Ms Ratidzai Ndhlovu, disclosed this at the
graduation of 100 rehabilitated women living with
obstetric Fistula in Sokoto.
Ndhlovu, represented by Dr Audu Alayande,
Assistant Country Representative, Reproductive
Health, said one in every 10 women suffered from
this condition following childbirth.
Ndhlovu, who donated assorted empowerment
materials worth N2.3 million to the graduands,
said most women who developed fistula had
probably given birth at home with no assistance
from skilled birth attendant.
``For this group of women, everyday, they must
cope with the foul smell emanating from their
leaking urine and faeces,'' she added.
She lamented that most of the affected women
often lose their babies following child birth
``In the same vein, these women down with VVF
were often abandoned by their husbands,
stigmatized by families and communities, and
She said the graduands had received a two-
month training in sewing and knitting, petty
trading and grinding machines operations, among
She said the items given to them would help
them to be productive and useful to themselves.
``This gesture is aimed at helping their
reintegration process back into the society and
reduce their stigmatization,'' Ndhlovu said.
The Permanent Secretary, state ministry for
Women and Children Affairs, Alhaji Suleiman
Sarkin-Fulani, commended UNFPA for the gesture.
Sarkin-Fulani said the state government had
staffed and equipped Maryam Abacha Hospital,
which hosts VVF Centre to enable it take care of
He appealed to other donor agencies, partner
organizations and wealthy individuals to assist in
treating and rehabilitating VVF patients.
Malam Musa Isa, the Executive Director, Nigeria
Fistula Foundation, urged the beneficiaries to
desist from selling the items given to them.
One of the graduands, Balki Saidu, commended
the fund for rescuing them from the ``shackles of