AS a member of the Midhurst and Petworth Rotary Club, Midhurst Rotarian Peter Nightingale has spent many years with the organisation involved in its campaign to rid the world of polio.
So he and his wife Gill were over the moon when they travelled half-way across the world on holiday recently to India to find a banner trumpeting the fact that the country was now ‘polio-free.’
They spotted the banner while in a taxi from the airport to their hotel.
“In fact the sign marked three years since the last reported case of polio in India in January 2011 and we were delighted to see this outward declaration of delight,” said Peter.
Eager to record the banner on camera, the next morning the couple hailed a Tuk Tuk driver and asked him to help them find the banner again.
“During our Tuk Tuk tour, the driver found the roundabout, came to an abrupt stop where I leapt out and took a picture of the banner, with noisy traffic speeding all around me. Then off Gill and I went on an interesting tour.
“Having doubled the fee requested, this cost us all of £1 and it gave us a wonderful afternoon out and a Tuk Tuk driver well pleased with his earnings.”
Peter added: “Many people have contributed to various collections which the Rotary Club of Midhurst and Petworth have made, so you are to be thanked for helping the people of India.”
The Polio Eradication Campaign continues throughout the world.
In 2014 just three countries remain endemic with the polio virus – Nigeria, Afghanistan and Pakistan.
“If polio isn’t eradicated, the world will continue to live under the threat of the disease and don’t forget the virus is only a plane ride away,” warned Peter.