Speech By The Vice Chancellor, Masinde Muliro University During The Cancer Screening Launch By Pan Africa Life And Africa Cancer Foundation At Mmust Graduation Square, Kakamega On Thursday 28th August 2014

"Distinguished Guests, Ladies and Gentlemen,

I take this opportunity to welcome you all to Masinde Muliro University of Science and Technology for this very important occasion. This event is important in the sense that, Cancer affects all of us in one way or the other. For the majority of us who are not infected, we may be supporting relatives and friends who are directly affected by Cancer.

On behalf of MMUST students and staff, allow me to recognize and commend the efforts that have been initiated by Pan Africa Life and Africa Cancer Foundation for bringing MMUST on board to create awareness about Cancer to our community.

As you may be aware, there are many types of cancer that affect our people. The most common types include: breast cancer, prostate cancer and cervical cancer. It is important to note that many myths that surround cancer ought to be demystified urgently to enable our people to get the required medical attention. 

The screening that will be conducted here today is a wake-up call to all of us to embrace medical seeking behavior to avoid the ravages of this disease which is prone to spreading quickly if not detected early enough. It is in this vein that I encourage you all to take a bold step and offer yourselves for screening today.

As you may all be aware, there are risk factors that accelerate the spread of cancer. For a long time, breast cancer has been associated with women only, but our medics present here today can attest to the fact that men are also affected by breast cancer. Growing older is the greatest risk factor for prostate cancer, particularly after age 50 in men. Family history also increases one's risk of contracting cancer.

Most importantly, I would like to underscore the essence of embracing a proper lifestyle by all of us present here today. Physical fitness through daily exercise and proper diet will help us keep at bay diseases such as cancer. 

MMUST is determined to fulfill its objectives of partnering with like-minded individuals and institutions in improving the lives of our people. In actualizing our objectives through the new School of Medicine which will open its doors to the public next year, we shall prioritize the establishment of a paediatric hospice to cater for the high number of young children under the age of 15 years who are also hard hit by different types of cancer.

MMUST is working closely with the Kakamega General Provincial Hospital which will soon be a referral facility. Our students will contribute in providing the required manpower to serve our communities. Our gratitude also goes to the County Government of Kakamega for supporting this University in achieving our dream of bringing health services closer to our people.

I am happy to note that MMUST offers academic programmes that can help us in learning more about how to avoid some of the risk factors associated with cancer. Our Nursing and Dietetics programme is one among the many programmes that will guide you on proper nutrition and diet which seem to play a role in curbing the development of different types of cancers.

Allow me to take this opportunity to challenge our academic staff to engage further into action research regarding problems that face our society such as health matters. MMUST is ready to play host to the Kakamega Chapter of the African Cancer Foundation whenever required as this is in line with our corporate social responsibility.

Finally, I would like to call upon other partners to join us in this noble cause of improving the livelihoods of our people by actively participating in dissemination of knowledge that can turn around our society.

With these few remarks I officially flag off the cancer screening drive.

Thank you."

Prof. F.A.O Otieno,

Vice Chancellor, MMUST

28th August 2014

 P. O. BOX 190-50100, Kakamega

Phone no: +254 702597360/1

                  +254 733120020/2

                   057 2505222/3

email: info@mmust.ac.ke.

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