Highlights Of The Response Of The Honourable Minister Of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire At The Presidential Task Force On COVID-19 Press Briefing Of Monday, 11th May, 2020.
On the Herbal “Cure to COVID -19” from Madagascar:
The Honourable Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire disclosed the Health Authority has been in touch with Madagascar for the announced “successful cure” to COVID-19. The Honourable Minister said that the Health Authority has asked for samples to know the strains of the botanical plant that was used by the Madagascar Herbal Researchers, especially the scientific community for the plant used in the announced cure and how it is being used. He further disclosed that “It is an herbal product from a plant called “Artemisia annua” which also grows here (in Nigeria), but we want to know the particular strain of the plant.”
Dr. Ehanire further said that “We want to subject it to further analysis to know whether we can recommend it to our researchers who are already working here. Every country of the World is trying to find a cure to COVID-19 and Nigeria is not an exception. We are looking at all the possibilities, all the options and examine it, letting it go through further validation before we start administering it to our people. It has to go through all processes for us to know that it will be useful before we start administering it to our people.”
On health workers’ demands and the reported threat to go on strike:
The Honourable Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire expressed appreciation to the Health workers for the sacrifices made so far in combating the COVID-19 menace. He however appealed to them to channel any grievances they have in the course of discharging their duties to the appropriate quarters and also allow sufficient time for the Government to address same. He said: “This is no time to go on strike as we need all hands on deck”, the Honourable Minister cautioned.
On local production of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE):
The Honourable Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire admitted that consultations are on-going between the Government and Nigerian manufactures of some of the equipment. He said, samples of the PPE made by the Nigerian manufacturers have been forwarded to NCDC for assessment. Speaking further the Honourable Minister of Health disclosed that Government would rather give preference to the PPE produced locally than foreign ones if they are of good standard. He said “This is for the obvious advantage of creating jobs and consequently stimulating Nigeria’s economy.”
For: Director of Information.