COVID-19: Nigerian Armed Forces Get PPEs Boost From US

Chiefs of Army Staff, Navy and Air Force in ceremonial uniform

BY EDMOND ODOK, ABUJA – The Nigerian Armed Forces remain appreciative that the long lasting relationship between Nigeria and the United States has been quite beneficial to them.

Most importantly, the partnership on health and allied matters has over the years assisted in achieving remarkable records in prevention, care and treatment of HIV; Ebola; Lassa Fever; and recently the containment of Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The positive news was conveyed by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Defence, Babangida Hussaini while receiving on behalf of the Nigerian Armed Forces donations of health care items, including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), from the United States Department of Defence.

Hussaini, who represented the Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Salihi Magashi at the event, said the collaboration has grown to include researches and several interventions that provides source of livelihoods through job creation for health care workers and professionals allied to healthcare delivery.

The Permanent Secretary specifically noted that “the Defence Referral Laboratory, recently re-accredited with state-of–the-art diagnostic equipment, was established with the US government support, adding that the development has greatly enhanced the capacity of our personnel leading to ground breaking research studies.”

He explained that outcomes of the researches have been utilized to upscale the prevention and management of infectious diseases, especially at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic.

A statement by Kabir Isa B for the Director Press and Public Relations, Ministry of Defence, said; “There is no gainsaying the fact that this donation would further enhance the ability of our front line medical staff in the fight to curtail the Covid-19 and to ensure that staff go about their duties with minimal risk of being exposed to harmful infectious agents.”

The Permanent Secretary assured the Donors that the items would be appropriately deployed to relevant military facilities without delay or hindrance.

Officially presenting the equipment, the United States Charge de Affair, Nigeria, Kathleen Fitzgibbon, said the relationship between the US and Nigeria has remained community oriented.

He said the US would continue to support the government and people of Nigeria for a better world.

Welcoming guests to the presentation ceremony, Director General, Defence Health Implementation Programme (DHIP), Brig. General Nathan Anelechi Okeji, praised the visionary leadership of the Minister of Defence, Major General Bashir Salihi Magashi and the US Ambassador to Nigeria for actualizing their understanding.

Highlight of the event was the facility tour of Nigerian Air force Hospital’s emergency COVID-19 Treatment Centre undertaken by the Permanent Secretary and other guests.

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