From Maduabuchi Nmeribeh, Kano
Kano state Governor, Dr. Abdullahi Umar Ganduje on Sunday, directed Muslims and Christians in the state to set aside Monday as special praying and fasting day across the state dedicated for seeking the face of God to avert the COVID-19 calamity in the state and the country at large.
Ganduje who gave the directive during the inauguration of 37-member Fund-Raising Committee on COVID-19 Palliatives in the state, at Africa House, Government House, described the Corona Virus pandemic as a problem that is ravaging the whole world.
The Kano Chief Executive who could not hide his emotions over the havoc the pandemic has caused across the globe, described it as, “world war three,” pointing out that, “there is no doubt it is a serious issue which all serious-minded people should pay attention to.”
Though Kano is yet to record a single case of COVID-19, Ganduje who listed the proactive efforts hi administration has so far taken, to ensure that the virus does not infiltrate the state, noted that the main aim of setting up the Committee was to source funds to help citizens who are adversely affected by the strident measures taken by government to curtail the spread of the disease.
According to him, as part of measures to stop the spread of the virus, Kano state government closed the borders and prevented mass movement of people in and outside the state.
He said his administration allowed the movement and distribution of essential commodities such as fuel, food stuff, among others so as to stop a total shutdown o economic activities in the state.
Ganduje who recalled that his administration ordered for closure of schools and directed civil servants to stay away from work for two weeks, reminded Kano residents of the need the regularly wash their hands, observe sanitary measures and social distancing.
He said the state government has also engaged in regular fumigation of public places such as hospitals and markets, all in a bid to ensure that the dreaded Corona Virus pandemic does not take its toll on the state.
Re-emphasizing the need to seek divine intervention, Ganduje stated that, “I call on Kano people to observe fasting tomorrow, 30th March, and 5th Sha’aban and pray hard against the outbreak of coronavirus in our dear state. I also called on people to intensify prayers because prayer is the best fire for this disease.”
He also hinted the Committee that Africa’s richest man, Alhaji Aliko Dangote has promised to provide 600 beds and other infrastructure at the Sani Abacha Stadium which has been designated as an Isolation Centre.
Ganduje who also appealed to retired health workers in the state to commence registration with the state Ministry of Health as volunteers to fight the Corona Virus, said the measures are being put in place in case of possible outbreak of the virus in the state.
Ganduje further stated that the aim of inaugurating the Committee is to raise funds to assist the poor people and downtrodden in order to cushion the economic effects of measures taken to curb the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.
According to him, “while we are putting efforts to take preventive and curative measures against the coronavirus pandemic, there are some group of people who can not earn a living without going out everyday to fend for their families.
” There are those who are economically weak and must be affected during this trying time. That is why we decided to form a Committee to raise money in order to help them cushion the effects.”
Ganduje also handed over evidence of the donation of the sum of N28.5 million by the United Bank for Africa (UBA), adding that the Lee Group of Companies has also provided equipment and materials for fumigating public places across the state.
He mentioned the Terms of Reference of the Committee to include identifying organizations and groups that are fit to make donations, identify the kind of items and materials needed for donations, identify the beneficiaries, identify the needs of the beneficiaries, and also identify the mode of distribution of the donated items.
The Vice Chancellor of Bayero University Kano (BUK), Prof. Yahuza Bello is the chairman of the Committee, while Alhaji Tajuddeen Aminu Dantata is the Co-Chairman.
Other members of the Committee include Senator Barau I. Jibrin; Hon. Alhassan Ado Doguwa; Rt. Hon. Abdul’aziz Garba Gafasa, Speaker Kano State
House of Assembly; Alhaji Yusuf Nabahani, Madakin Kano; Alhaji Salisu Sambajo, Representative of Alhaji Aliko Dangote; Alhaji Karami Isyaka Rabi’u, Representative of Alhaji Abdussamad Isyaka Rabi’u; Alhaji Dalhatu Abubakar Al-Amsad, President, KACCIMA.
Others are Alhaji Mudassir Idi Abubakar ; Alhaji Abdullahi Abbas, Kano APC Chairman; Alhaji Nasiru Aliko Koki; IPAC Chairman, Kano; Murtala Sule Garo, Commissioner for Local Government; Malam Muhammad Garba, Commissioner of Information; Dr. Zahra’u Umar Muhammad, Commissioner for Women Affairs; Dr. Muhammad Tahar Adamu, Commissioner for Religious Affairs; Hon. Lamin Sani, Kano ALGON Chairman; Prof. Abdu Salihi, Kano Integrity Group; Alhaji Haruna Zago; Ustaz Yusuf Makwarari;Sheikh Abdullahi Saleh Pakistan.
Other members of the Committee include Sheikh Haroun Ibn Sina; CAN President, Kano; Chief Boniface Ibekwe, E ze Ndi Igdo, Kano; Oba of Yoruba, Kano; Hajiya Aishatu Ja’afar, S.A. Social Intervention; representative of NEMA, Kano Office; Comrade Abbas Ibrahim, NUJ Kano Chairman; Barr. Abdul Adamu Fagge, NBA Kano Chairman; Comrade Ibrahim Adamu, Umbrella of Kano Concerned Civil Society Groups; representative of Red Cross, Kano; SP Abdulkadir Haruna Hadejia, Kano Police Command; Yusuf Dawaki; representative of Nigeria Civil Defence Corp, Kano State Command; representative of Kano State Vigilante Group; Hajiya Bilkisu Shehu Maimota, Permanent Secretary,
REPA will serve as Secretary.
In his remarks, Chairman of the Committee,, Prof. Yahuza Bello thanked Ganduje for finding him worthy to serve in such capacity, promising that members of the Committee will use their wealth of experience to achieve the desired result.