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Visiting Chinese medical team won’t meet COVID-19 patients, FG explains

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Minister of State for Health, Olorunnimbe Mamora (right); Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire; Speaker, House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila; Chief Whip, Muhammad Monguno; Deputy Leader, Peter Akpatason; and Deputy Chief Whip, Nkeiruka Onyejeocha, during a meeting on the engagement of 18 Chinese medical personnel by the Federal Government at the National Assembly complex, Abuja…yesterday. 


•Lagos to accept only molecular biologists, logisticians
•Gbajabiamila, South East youths reject engagement of foreigners

The Federal Government has appealed to medical professionals in the country to see the coming of the Chinese medical team as a positive gesture and an extension of development in the field of medicine.

Secretary to Government of the Federation and chairman of the Presidential Task Force PTF on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, who spoke yesterday in Abuja, asserted: “In no way shall there be case management and interface with patients. They will train our manpower, advise on procedures and methods as well as instal and test the equipment donated before handling them over.” He pointed out that government recognises and respects the competence and capability of Nigerian doctors and other medical personnel in the country.

“This is a state of war against the coronavirus and time should not be devoted to unhelpful controversies,” Mustapha pleaded. The SGF noted that the restrictions in Lagos, Ogun and Abuja had been substantially complied with.

“We shall prepare a full assessment by the end of the week in order to advise Mr. President on the next step to take before the expiration of the 14-day lockdown,” he stated.Moreover, the Lagos State government yesterday said it would only welcome molecular biologists and logisticians.

The Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, who was giving updates on the coronavirus epidemic, said the state was only in short of molecular biologists and logisticians.

He maintained that Lagos was ready to accept any molecular biologists and logisticians from any part of the world. Abayomi added that there was need for collaboration in tackling the pandemic, adding that China had experience managing the virus.

In a similar vein, Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, yesterday opposed entering of the Chinese. Speaking at a meeting between the leadership of the lower legislative chamber and the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, and the Minister of State, Olorunnimbe Mamora, in Abuja, the speaker insisted that they (Chinese) must be made to undergo the necessary checks.

Gbajabiamila argued that the measure became necessary to allay fears of many Nigerians.

The two ministers however assured him that the18 Chinese doctors would not have personal contact with patients during their stay. Besides, the Ohanaeze Ndigbo Youth Council (OYC) has faulted the engagement of the Chinese.

In a statement yesterday in Abakaliki, its national president, Mazi Okechukwu Isiguzoro, preferred professionals from India or Cuba. Also yesterday, the Coalition of Southeast Youth Leaders (COSEYL) described as a “suicide mission” the ‘importation of Chinese medical experts’ by the President Muhammadu Buhari administration to manage the epidemic.

A statement by its president and secretary, Goddluck Ibem and Kanice Igwe, stated that their coming would worsen the situation.


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