Nigerian Army Agrees To Offer Security Support For Isolation Centres – Health Minister

Rejoice Ewodage  
Updated April 28, 2020
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire speaks on the Federal Government’s response to the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) in the country on March 1, 2020.


The Minister for Health, Osagie Ehanire, says the Nigerian army has agreed to support isolation centres in the country with security as the need arises.

Ehanire said this on Tuesday while answering questions around security during the Presidential Task Force briefing on COVID-19 in Abuja.

“We have had to speak to security forces about that and I can say quite happily and proudly that the Nigerian Army has agreed to support isolation centres with security as the need arises”, the minister said.

“So we shall be applying for their support in situations where we need security for all our patients and also those who are awaiting results or who have been tested.”

Speaking about other efforts being made by the government to fight the spread of the disease, Ehanire said: “The Ministry of Health has set up a ministerial expert advisory committee, made up of eminent Nigerian virologists, public health experts, infectious disease and diagnostic experts and others, to study the evolution and development of the COVID-19 outbreak, especially as we go into this community transmission phase.”

The minister also responded to concerns about the increasing number of cases.

According to him, that could be “evidence of improved testing but also stronger signs of community transmissions”.

“The highly propagated social measures like social distancing and postponement of all non-essential travel have had only limited success,” he admitted.

He, however, stressed that it is a reminder that we need to redouble our efforts to comply with advisories, “especially as restrictions have been eased”.

President Muhammadu Buhari had on Monday, announced an extension of the lockdown in key cities like the FCT Abuja, Ogun State and Lagos by one week, after which he asked the states to begin to ease the lockdown in phases to avoid to a total breakdown of the economy.

With this, Ehanire believes that “much more stringent compliance” to hygiene measures such as constant washing of hands, wearing of masks and maintaining physical distance, “will be required from all of us in order not to have any reversal.”

He also stated that provisions will be made for “holding bay for suspected cases before their results come out.”