SCFN Graduates 19th Tranche of Genetic Counsellors

March 20, 2020: Scene at the 19th GCTC, Lagos.

In previous years, the Sickle Cell Foundation (Nigeria) had trained and certified 30 or more new Genetic Counsellors at a time. This year, by accident or design, the numbers were much lower, just 22 in all, half of whom were nurses, among them, retired nurse and midwife, Mrs. Falilat Funmilayo Salami.

Graduating Genetic Counsellor Mrs. Falilat Funmilayo Salami (left) with Mrs. Ayo Otaigbe, Director/Tutor, Sickle Cell Foundation (Nigeria)

As in other parts of the continent and the world, one issue occupies the thoughts of one and all: the coronavirus pandemic. The closing/award ceremonies of the 19th GCTC Course marked the first time the ceremonies would take place in the middle of a raging horror sweeping mercilessly and invisibly around the planet.

22 graduands in all, comprising mainly health professionals. They had received intensive for two gruelling weeks, most with preconceived notions they either had to yield or stick to in their inner hearts. Or remain adamantly irresolute which way to turn.

In the event, the crowd was scanty, possibly by accident or design, no one can tell. Possibly, folks with SCD were being cautious to avoid crowded conditions.

Nefertiti, the dance troupe proudly showcasing Nigeria’s multicultural endowments, was on hand to provide musical interludes.

In her vote of thanks, SCFN’s National Director/CEO, Dr. Annette Akinsete praised her staff for helping to make the 19th GCTC happen. Professor Olu Akinyanju, Chairman, SCFN, Mrs Ayo Otaigbe, SCFN Director, and other principal officers of Africa’s biggest and most influential SCD corporate entity were present at the seminal event.

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