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Hand Washing Speech Grabs Award

Hand Washing Speech Grabs Award
Assistant Minister for Health and Medical Services Alex O’Conor, guests and staff and students of Xavier College, Ba during the launch of the official site for the handwashing programme on July 4, 2018. Photo: Yogesh Chandra
July 05
10:00 2018

Aidah Zaahira’s powerful speech during the launch of the handwashing programme at Xavier College in Ba yesterday saw her win a prize.

The Xavier College Year 11 student said handwashing with soap should be a priority at the national level.

She is also concerned about the increase in the number of communicable diseases in Fiji.

“I believe by handwashing, we can at least reduce the number of communicable diseases,” she said.

“There is also a need for rural communities to have access to clean water.

“Effective handwashing can only take place if you have clean water.”

The Assistant Minister for Health and Medical Services, Alex O’Conor said five people had died, this year, through the Meningococcal disease.


Mr O’Conor emphasised to students the Men-C vaccination and its importance.

“The Men-C vaccination is key to young people and is administered through schools, kindergartens and health centres throughout Fiji,” he said.

“Students must be aware of the symptoms of the disease.

“It’s important for you to be aware of the signs and symptoms such as sudden fever, vomiting, headache, stiff neck, eyes sensitivity to light and vomiting.

“Prevention is better than cure. After coughing or sneezing, wash your hands with soap and water.

“Don’t share eating utensils such as cups, glasses and water bottles.”

He said the washing of hands with soap and water was the best way to prevent the spread of diseases.

Year 11 student Nacanieli Tokalau was happy to be a part of the launch programme.

“I plan to enlighten everyone I meet from now onwards on the importance of handwashing.

“It will be my social responsibility,” he said.

“If you value your life, then you should prioritise hygiene as well.”

Edited by Percy Kean



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