Further to the response about one of our previous posts on posters out of Nigeria, we spent Wednesday afternoon at the International AIDS conference going round the posters from Nigeria. We do realise the hurdles of presenting work from Nigeria at a conference like this. From finding the time and space in a country with almost no electricity, writing up a scientific article, finding funds, getting a visa…the hurdles appear endless. It was no surprise therefore that most of the colleagues at the conference were funded predominantly by our “development partners”, mostly USAID grantees. But all the same, one cannot help but wonder how much the work done by colleagues, presented here at the conference influences the response in Nigeria. One wonders how much our colleagues at the Federal Ministry of Health, and the National Agency for Control of AIDS are doing in collecting the evidence from research projects in the country, and how much it is being used to inform the evidence base for policy formulation. Each day I looked around for these colleagues, hoping to see some of them at least going round to encourage our colleagues that have made the effort to present, flying the flag and presenting their work at this conference. Well….maybe they did go round…and I did not see them! Did you?
But we will not let that distress us. We will bring to you a cross selection of the posters from Nigeria presented at the conference. These Nigerians deserve to be heard. As they stood by their posters waiting, a few of us walked round and listened with interest to the work they did and to their results and recommendations. Summaries are presented below. If you want to get in touch with any of them directly on an issue related to their work – get in touch with us and we will link you up.
Their voices deserve to be heard, you deserve to hear these voices…
edicine at the University of Port Harcourt presented the results of his work comparing the willingness to test for HIV in school vs community based youths in Port Harcourt. Seye’s work was one of the few I found not obviously supported by one of our development partners….
Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful committed people can change the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has…Margaret Mead
Jolly good report. Highly appreciated in BMJ Wst Africa edition rooms. Especially the segment on ‘lets hear their voices’.
The truth is that very little original research is happening anywhere in nigeria. Not in Universities (that spring up daily like mushrooms), not in so-called research institutes, not privately, etc. The reasons are many, some of which you highlighted especially lack of electricity- every President or Minister of Power tells us there is a ‘mafia’ or ‘cabal’ stopping the solution to this national scourge and disgrace. You wonder that if they know that there is a cabal or mafia they sure must know the members of these vagabonds ( i borrow this from Fela Anikulapo-Kuti of blessed memory!. If they know them then what is stopping every President from going after them. If they dont know them, what knid of security organisations do we have in Nigeria ( mind you the security vote is one of the largest and outside the lenses of auditors).
Thanks very much for all the reports on the conference. Well done and God bless.