By Omeiza Ajayi – Abuja
Nigerian President, Muhammadu Buhari has instructed the Presidential Task Force (PTF) to subject Madagascar’s COVID-Organics to required scientific analysis before being put into any form of use.
The Chairman of the PTF and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF). Boss Mustapha revealed this during the daily briefing on Monday.
He said the COVID-Organics, a herbal cure touted by the Madagscar’s president for the treatment of COVID-19, which is currently in Guinea-Bissau would soon be freighted to Nigeria and would be subjected to all necessary validations before usage.
In his own words, Mustapha said; “With respect to the Madagascar syrup, it has been freighted to Guinea-Bissau by the President of Madagascar. Certain allocations have been made to different countries.
“We have an indication of the quantity that has been allocated to Nigeria and we are supposed to make arrangements to freight it out of Guinea-Bissau to Nigeria.
“I have received instructions from Mr President to make arrangements to freight it home with a clear instruction that I should subject it to the validation process similar to what would happen to any other medicine or syrup or vaccine that is discovered or created internally.
“So, it will be subjected to the same process before it is put into any form of use. There will be no exception or that”.
Speaking in the same vein, Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire said Nigeria would analyse the syrup to see if it can be reproduced here.
He said; “We have a promise of being able to get samples of the herb or botanical product for analysis and also probably use that opportunity to speak with the health authorities there particularly the scientific community on how they use it.
“But obviously, to also give back to the research community here with us to examine and see what they can do with it.
“We understand that it is something called ‘Artemisia Annua’ which also grows here but we will like to, if we get that sample, compare it with the strain here whether they are exactly identical or whether they are two different strains and see what properties it has and subjected to further analysis bro find out what works there, how it works and the use in getting a cure.
“Obviously, call countries in the world are interested in finding a cure and we are not different. So, we are looking at all possibilities, all options, all promises that are made, we examine them, and before we give them to our people, we make sure that they are actually safe and that they work”.
Ok the number of tests conducted so far, the minister said; “As at the end of yesterday (Sunday), Nigeria has ramped up testing by 1,127 to a total of 27,078 tests, which yielded 4,399 cases in 35 States, with a gender ratio of 70 to 30 percent for men and women. 778 persons have been discharged home and we have sadly recorded 143 datalities, giving a case fatality rate of 3%.
“Senior management of the Federal Ministry of Health and clinical case managers in our hospitals, this morning participated in a multinational teleconference with Chinese medical and academic experts in Beijing, where much insight was gained into the treatment strategy of China and other matters of common interest were discussed.
“The learnings from this intervention are invaluable in reexamining our methods”, he added.