Lagos Governor, Babatunde Fashola says the state has received the N200 million donated by the Federal Government to fight the outbreak of Ebola in Lagos.
The governor disclosed on Monday at the State House, Ikeja, Lagos, Southwest Nigeria when MTN Nigeria Limited donated Personal Protective Equipment, PPE, to the government to be worn by those attending to Ebola patients at the Isolation Centre.
Fashola said the government received the money last Wednesday from the Federal Government and that the money would be used for the purpose it was meant for.
Commending MTN for the gesture, the governor reiterated the state did not need donations at this time as it had what is needed to fight the EVD, but noted that the challenge being faced in the management of Ebola was shortage of virologists.
“The health team accepts this gesture and wish to reiterate that whilst we understand and fully appreciate humanitarian concern that propels these things, the real problem is the sufficiency of experienced Virologists, that is Ebola specialist needed in managing this Ebola issue. That, really is the problem, it is not always a money problem. It isn’t really an equipment problem, it is human capacity problem.
“Like I said before we do not need to panic, Ebola virus is not automatic death sentence. A lot of knowledge is being gained on daily basis even at this moment about the behaviour of the virus and that knowledge helps the scientist to prepare even better to respond.
“Different types of the virus have been identified and they now have clarity about the length of lifespan of the virus. That body of knowledge has helped in the management of disease.
The governor expressed sadness that outbreak of the disease had been recorded in Port Harcourt, Rivers State, another urban settlement like Lagos, stressing that the experience of Lagos and Port Harcourt would serve as definitive knowledge in the fight of Ebola in urban settlement.
He added that the state is collaborating with the government of Rivers State to curtail the spread of the disease in that state.
So far, Fashola said seven people had been survived the disease and five dead in Lagos while two were still currently at the Isolation Centre at Mainland General Hospital, Yaba.
Chairman, MTN Nigeria, Dr. Pascal Dozie while presenting the PPE said the gesture was as a result of the seriousness Lagos State had shown in curtailing the spread of Ebola in the state.
“Our coming here is very simple. When you see a good thing, you appreciate it and would want to be part of it. We have watched the Lagos State Government under the leadership of Governor Fashola when this Ebola incident occurred.
“We thank God that it started in Lagos because if it has started elsewhere, we would have had a pandemic. We are here to express our appreciation and lend our support. We had already started supporting their cause by providing call centres, that is the Ebola hot line where their doctors are there responding to inquiries and findings.
“Today, we have come to provide in support a fairly reasonable quantum of Personal Protective items both for the care givers and other health workers,” he stated.