Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Don blames death of 2m people on unsafe food consumption

08 April 2015, 07:44Folorunso Poroye

Lagos - Professor Mba Okoronkwo of the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) has blamed the death of an estimated two million people yearly worldwide, on  unsafe food consumption.

Okoronkwo, Dean at the School of Health Sciences gave the figure at an event to celebrate the 2015 World Health Day in Lagos on Tuesday.

The theme of the event, jointly organised by the university and Young Men's Christian Association (YMCA) was "Food Security".

World Health Day is celebrated on April 7 annually.

The don said that foods containing harmful bacteria, viruses, parasites or chemical substances were responsible for more than 200 diseases, ranging from diarrhea to cancer.

"That is why the WHO is promoting efforts to improve food safety, from farm to plate, and everywhere in between, on World Health Day.

"The World Health Day 2015 is an opportunity to alert people working in different government sectors, farmers, manufacturers, retailers and health practitioners about the importance of food safety.

"It equally emphasises the part each of us can play in ensuring that everyone can feel confident that the food on their plate is safe to eat.

"As our food supply becomes increasingly globalised, the need to strengthen food safety systems in and between all countries is becoming more and more evident."

Okoronkwo said that the WHO helped countries prevent, detect and respond to food borne-disease outbreaks, in line with international food standards, guidelines and sides of practice.

He said that the WHO, together with the UN Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), alerted countries to food safety emergencies, through international informational network.

Also read: Fuel scarcity resurfaces in northern states

According to Okonkwo, food is a fundamental human need, a basic right and a prerequisite to good health.

He said the human body depended on the energy, protein, vitamins and mineral elements found in a variety of foods to survive, and remain strong.

The don said that new threats to food safety were constantly emerging, with changes in food production, distribution and consumption.

"Changes to environment, new and emerging pathogens, anti-microbial resistance all pose challenges to national food systems.

"Food safety is a shared responsibility. It is important to work all along the food production chain, from the farmer and manufacturers to vendors and consumers," he said.

Earlier, the  YMCA Chairman, Mike Onilude, said that the association was founded by George Williams and other 11 young men in London in 1884.

Onilude said the formation was in response to the unhealthy social conditions that arose in big cities at the end of the industrial revolution.

According to him, the association will continue to empower young people to offer support to developmental programmes and services that would enhance better living.

The association operates in 120 countries across the world. 



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...