Oyo govt …donate medical equipment, commend proactive steps in combating virusThe management of Shell Nigeria Gas Limited and the Capital Market Committee on COVID-19, have donated medical equipment, face masks and infrared thermometers worth millions of Naira, to the Oyo State Government in support of its drive to curtail the spread of novel coronavirus in the state.The two organisations made the donations on Wednesday, at the Secretariat, Agodi, Ibadan.They commended what they called the proactive steps taken by the state government so far in combating COVID-19.A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor of Oyo State, Mr Taiwo Adisa, listed the equipment donated by Shell Nigeria Gas Limited as including coronavirus PCR test machine and extraction kits, RIDA genesars, nasopharyngeal swab plus viral transport medium kits, vortex mixer, personal protective equipment.The statement added that the Capital Market Committee donated 100 face masks and 150 infrared thermometers to the Ministry of Education to further strengthen efforts to curb the novel COVID-19. The statement added that the two donations were received by Commissioners and other top government functionaries.Speaking while receiving the donations from Shell Gas Nigeria Limited, the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Bashir Bello, appreciated the gesture of the company to the state, saying: “We appreciate the full concern of Shell Nigeria Gas for these immeasurable materials. When we tried to estimate this, we observed it is worth over N25million or thereabout, particularly the PCR and all testing kit materials. “We have found out that having very good kits are necessary. Of course, we now know that the state is moving on to the community testing stage. So, this is a weapon. Coming to the issue of the health care workers, we have the personal protective equipment, PPE, and all the necessary paraphernalia and other different reagents.“This, actually, has been well mapped out and well solved to promote further testing, tracing and isolation, which is the main thing for the surveillance team in this COVID-19 pandemic. So, on behalf of the entirety of the state government and ministries of Energy and Health, we thank you very much for this kind gesture.” Similarly, the Commissioner for Energy, Barr. Seun Ashamu, who also spoke at the event, noted that the gesture was well-received and will be utilized by the Ministry of Health and other frontline workers within the state to ensure that the state government is in the best position to tackle the pandemic.While also receiving the donations from the Capital Market Committee on COVID-19, the Commissioner for Education, Barr. Olasunkanmi Olaleye, in his remarks, expressed gratitude to the committee, promising to deploy the materials to schools so as to prevent further spread of the virus. “We appreciate the donation of 150 infrared thermometers by the Capital Market Committee on COVID-19 and another 100 face masks. We express our appreciation to them on behalf of the Oyo State Government for identifying with our state in this fight against the pandemic.“It is a good thing that the capital market is doing this for the states across Nigeria. In actual fact, we were told that they have donated ambulances to some states as well. So, we are grateful to them.“We are going to deploy this to our schools as well so that we can collectively defeat the virus here in Oyo State,” he said.In their separate remarks, the Managing Director, Shell Nigeria Gas Limited, Mr. E.D. Ubong, said the company was committed to the health and well-being of its partners and their communities.Mr. Ubong, who spoke through the Technical Director of the company, Engr. Joe Ezukwuso, said the donations were done to ensure that frontline workers combat the pandemic and that support staff do their work professionally in a safe manner.He commended the government for the actions and its guidelines in preventing the spread of the virus, noting that the company would continue to work with the Oyo State Ministry of Health, Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, and other relevant government authorities on adherence to COVID-19 established protocols.”Today, we are presenting Oyo State Government with COVID-19 compatible critical equipment to enhance the state’s medical capacities and capabilities to further combat the pandemic,” he said.In the same vein, the Group Executive Officer, Emerging Africa Capital Ltd, Barr. Oluwatoyin Sanni, commended the Oyo State Government for taking proactive steps to tackle COVID-19.“This actually forms one of our various interventions, which are touching every state in Nigeria as well as the Federal Capital Territory. It is our hope that this will form part of the equipment that Oyo State will continue to put to use. It is already very successful in its battle against COVID-19. And with the collaboration between public and private sectors, we are confident that sooner than later, Nigeria will defeat the COVID-19 pandemic,” she said.Some of the dignitaries who attended the donations include the chairman, Hospital Management Board, Dr.Gbola Adetunji; TESCOM chairman, Pastor Akin Alamu; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Energy, Mr.Segun Ajekigbe; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education, Mrs. Atere Aminat; Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health, Dr. Adebisi Ayoola; and Permanent Secretary, Hospital Management Board, Adeyanju Olusoji, among others.SignedTaiwo AdisaChief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde19 August, 2020.