By Ezeocha Nzeh
The Coalition Against COVID-19 (CACOVID) and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) have pledged a combined sum of N350 million donation to support Oyo State’s containment efforts against COVID-19.
The state’s Commissioner for Finance, Mr. Akinola Ojo and a member of the COVID-19 Task Force, Professor Temitope Alonge, told a meeting of the Task Force presided over by Governor Seyi Makinde that while CACOVID was supporting the state with N30 million cash for rehabilitation of isolation centres, it will also gave equipment worth N220 million.
The NCDC, according to the Task Force members, will also support the state with N100 million.
A statement issued Sunday by the Chief Press Secretary to the state governor, Tâiwo Adisa, said the development was coming on the heels of collaborations between the state governments, authorities of the University of Ibadan, scientists and traditional herbal medicine practitioners in a bid to find a home-grown cure for COVID-19.
Adisa, also indicated that the state was wrapping up its Isolation Centres to 320- bed capacity.
“The government of Oyo State is receiving a donation of N250 million from the CACOVID team. The sum of N220 million is reserved for equipment and N30 million for renovation of the facilities at the isolation centres,” the statement said.
The statement also indicated that while the state had completed work on the Infectious Disease Centre, Olodo, Ibadan, which has 100-bed capacity, it is also working on a 100-bed Isolation Centre in Saki, 40-beds isolation centre in Ogbomoso, 40-bed isolation centre in Igboora, 10-bed centre in Agbami, Jericho and another 24-bed centre in Aawe near Oyo town.
This, the statement noted was as the government of Oyo State and the University of Ibadan have unveiled an effort aimed at discovering a home-grown cure for the novel Coronavirus.
The collaboration, according to the Executive Assistant to Governor Seyi Makinde on Administration, Rev. Idowu Ogedengbe, who represented the state government, was aimed at midwifing a town and gown approach that would lead to a sustainable cure for COVID-19.
“We want to start, we already know people that have the products, samples, mixtures and solutions but we don’t just want to take it on the surface and start promoting them.
“We want to first subject the products to scientific validation, so that by the time our virologists, botanists and other professionals in the University community look at those solutions, we will come up with something that the global community would benefit from. We want to really set the pace for others to emulate.” The statement quoted Ogedengbe as saying.