Government of Nigeria received essential medical equipment from ECOWAS Commission, through the West African Health Organisation (WAHO) as part of the regional response strategy. The event, which took place in Nigeria, Abuja, flags off the series of hand overs which will cover the entire region and boost the collective effort aimed at managing and curtailing the spread of the deadly virus.
With the active support of the German government through its Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, BMZ, the development agency-Gesellschaft fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit, GIZ, and well as bank- Kreditanstalt fur Wiederaufbau, KfW, the collaborative effort delivered 12,800 goggles, 294,000 small, medium and large gloves, 23,220 small, medium and large gowns, 8,190 coverall and 1,600 face shields. Other items were 12, 000 masks, 10,000 surgical masks, 5,000 sanitizers, 40,512 diagnostic test kits and two each of ventilators and ventilator trolleys.
A statement by the ECOWAS Commission said that the President of the ECOWAS Commission Jean-Claude Kassi Brou expressed the appreciation of ECOWAS to all the partners in the fight against COVID-19, which has enabled a measure of progress. President Brou particularly thanked the president of Nigeria and regional champion on COVID-19, Muhammadu Buhari, for the leadership and support provided including logistics back up to aid the distribution of the items to other ECOWAS Member States.
He alsop stated that the materials donated will go a long way in the fight against COVID-19 bearing in mind the sustenance of the collective and coordinated regional efforts in ensuring the health and wellbeing of West African citizens are guaranteed.
The Director-General of WAHO, Professor Stanley Okolo, said that the handover of the critical medical equipment is part of the larger efforts at flattening the COVID-19 curve. He noted that as the collaboration of partners for a common goal is yielding desired fruits, it has become even more imperative for the populations to get into the habit of behavioural change adjustments.
Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, said that the public health institution of the Nigerian Ministry of Health, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, as well as the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 were set up to lead the whole of government response strategy and determine non-pharmaceutical measures to ensure the safety of citizens. He said that the country’s health workers who are toiling assiduously to treat COVID-19 patients, provide emergency care, while not losing sight of routine and essential health services needed the support and encouragement of all.
The Director-General of the NCDC, Dr. Sani Aliyu, as well as the Permanent Secretary, Office of the Secretary to the Government of Nigeria, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, the coordinator of the Presidential Task Force for Nigeria, Olusegun Adekunle all corroborated Minister Ehanire in calling for concerted efforts in the fight against COVID-19. Besides the funders the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is also collaborating with WAHO in the area of procurement.