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Combating Covid-19: India donates 7-tonne of essential medicines to Nigeria

The Humanitarian Posts

July 17, 2020 - As part of its ongoing collaboration with African Countries to combat the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, the government of India has donated a 7-tonne consignment of essential medicines to the Nigerian government.

The Indian High Commissioner to Nigeria, Shri Abhay Thakur presented the items to Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire on Friday in Abuja..

Among the essential medicines donated to Nigeria are; Hydroxychloroquine and antibiotics.

Abhay Thakur said the donation was a reflection of the strong bilateral ties between Nigeria and India, as he pledged more support of the India government to Nigeria in combating the pandemic.

“This consignment has been sent to Nigeria in line with the commitment made in the conversation between Dr. S. Jaishankar, Minister of External Affairs of India and Mr. Geoffrey Onyeama, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Nigeria on 24 April 2020.

“This donation underscores the special and unique ties between India and Nigeria.

“India has also been offering e-ITEC short training online webinars on COVID-19 Management Strategies to Africa. So far, 14 Nigerian medical professionals have benefitted from these courses.

“In May/June 2020, India facilitated two commercial exports ofHCQS to Nigeria, after the Government of India gave an exemption for the supply of HCQS to Nigeria.

“India and Nigeria enjoy longstanding, multifaceted and friendly relations. India is a close developmental partner of Nigeria.

“And remains committed to build capacity and contribute towards the health and welfare of

the people of Nigeria, including in combatting and overcoming the Covid-19 challenge.

Nigeria’s Health Minister Ehanire appreciated the Indian government for the support as he solicited India’s collaboration to produce vaccine against the COVID-19 pandemic.

Ehanire told the Indian High Commissioner that the partnership on vaccine production would help to address the need of the country and that of the ECOWAS sub region.

“An area of interest I will like to stress is vaccine production; we are also a vaccine production aspiring country.

“Nigeria is presently in a joint venture with a private company on exploring vaccine production to meet the need of the country.

“We will like to collaborate with you, with the advance science in India to address the vaccine needs in Nigeria and in the ECOWAS sub region,’’the minister said.

Ehanire said he had attended a meeting of the ECOWAS Ministers of Health, which discussed ways to address the vaccine needs of the sub region, which is also an aspiration of the world to develop vaccine against COVID-19.

The Health Minister said “Nigeria will be interested if there is a way to connect our scientists to join your scientists to produce vaccine against COVID-19.’’

“I am delighted to receive these items donated by the government of India to the government and people of Nigeria.

“This is particularly touching, because COVID-19 affects all countries. You have your own problem, just as we have our own problems.

“In spite of that, you have been able to find the resources and attention to be able to remember Nigeria to make your donation to us.

“In the past, we have had information from you on management protocol and technical advice on COVID-19,’’the minister said.

Ehanire said that Nigeria have had long interaction with India on almost all areas, from defence to science, research and education, particularly.

“Perhaps, the most cognate of the connection between our countries is pharmaceutical; India is the hub of pharmaceutical productivity and all aspiring will look toward India in that respect.

“We look forward to collaborate with you in that area as well,’’Ehanire said.

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