The ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has appealed on Nigerians to support moves by the Federal Government to seek medical support from China in our bid to fight the scourge of the global Coronavirus pandemic in the country, saying the action was in the interest of the country.
The National Publicity Secretary of the party, Mallam Lanre Issa-Onilu on Tuesday made the appeal in an interview with The Nation in Abuja.
Last Friday, the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, disclosed government’s plan to invite a team of Chinese medical experts to combat COVID-19 outbreak in the country. On Monday, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha also reaffirmed this decision.
But in a swift reaction, the Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) and some concerned Nigerians vehemently kicked against federal government’s decision to invite the Chinese medical experts to the country. Arguing that the action will not only be counter-productive, but it will also undermine the success so far recorded by our medical personnel and they expressed fears that Nigerians may be turned to experimental guinea pigs by the Chinese.
The ruling party through its spokesman, however, appealed to all Nigerians to rally round the government in this new drive to defeat the dreaded virus, maintaining that the pandemic requires international collaboration and support of all global citizens, stressing that the scourge was not limited to the country alone.
Justifying government decision, Onilu said the country needs support where ever it is available. “In a situation like this, the idea of shared experience is nothing we can undermine. Some people have gone through the same experience and have gone through certain processes that we can learn from, so we should not shy away from shared experience.
“We need to share ideas. We need to combine forces because this is a global enemy that is not limited to Nigeria. The medical experts are coming for us to benefit from them and they, in return will benefit from our experts. We will combine strength and we will be stronger than our common invisible enemy”.
The ruling party pointed out that its call for foreign medical support was not to undermine the competence of the country’s medical personnel or under rate the success story recorded so far in containing the spread and in the management of the contagious virus in the country.
According to the party’s spokesman, “government’s action is not in anyway suggestive of the fact that our doctors and medical professionals are not up to date. Actually some are the best you can find anywhere in the world. They have proven this both within Nigeria and outside. They have held their own everywhere they have gone, but the situation now requires all hands on deck.
“No doubt, we owe the success recorded in the country to the ingenuity of our doctors and other medical professionals as well the political leadership provided by President Muhammadu Buhari, our governors, federal and state governments agencies, but the important thing in this situation is shared experience”.
The party then assured Nigerians that the government meant well in her decision. “We need to trust the system, those in government are no dummies. They are taking the right steps in the interest of this country. Whatever decision the country has taken in terms of allowing people from whether China or anywhere to supply us the badly needed support in terms of kits or equipments, our people should not worry. We should rally round government, trusting that this also shall pass very soon”.