If the coronavirus becomes a true pandemic, a large proportion of the human population — a third, a half, two-thirds even — could become infected, although that doesn’t necessarily mean they will get sick. The word ‘pandemic’ invokes fear, but it describes how widespread an outbreak may be, not its deadliness.
The Federal Government has released the sum of N386 million to strengthen preparedness and response for COVID-19 in the country.
Disclosing this in Abuja on Friday, the Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Health, Mr Abdulaziz Mashi Abdulaziz, said the sum was released in two batches.
“While the first batch of N71 million was released at the end of January to facilitate activities of the Port Health Services department of the Ministry, the second batch was released after the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, said the government had budgeted N620 million to curtail the virus from entering Nigeria when he appeared before the Senate Committee on Health.
“It is true that intervention was sought from the presidency and the Ministry of Finance and Budget Plannig. Because of the level of the emergency, I can confirm to you that N71million was released to the Port Health Services division of the (health) ministry.
“The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, was also given N315 million directly. Other requests are in the pipeline and yet to be released,” he said.