Ghana, Nigeria get medical supplies from China to contain coronavirus pandemic
London, April 7, 2020 (AltAfrica)-Nigeria and her West African neighbour Ghana are being assisted with medical supplies by China to combat the ravaging covid-19 pandemic
While Ghana on Monday received about 30,000 Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs), from the People’s Republic of China, Nigeria’s Health Minister, Osagie Ehanire, says the country is expecting more than one million face masks and other protective equipment from China in due course
This forms part of efforts to help some 17 West African countries including deal with the situation of Coronavirus in their countries.
The medical supplies to Ghana totalling 38,800 include 3,000 N95 protective face masks for frontline health workers, 10,000 protective face masks for all, 2,500 disposable overalls, 800 Infra-red Thermometers, 2,500 medical goggles, 10,000 single-use gloves and 10,000 disposable shoe covers.
Addressing reporters on Monday in Abuja, Health Minister Osagie Ehanire said the masks would be accompanied by ventilators, Personal Protective Equipment (PPEs) and an 18-man team made up of Chinese medical and technical experts, the Minister said during the daily briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.
Ehanire believes the supplies being brought in by China are “globally scarce” and will “augment government support and build capacity to contain the outbreak.”
speaking at the arriving ceremony in Accra, Ghana Health Minister, Kwaku Agyemang Manu expressed gratitude to the People’s Republic of China, emphasizing how much of help and relief it will serve the country in the interim, whilst government puts in measures to produce its very own locally manufactured PPEs.
“We are very grateful to the People’s Republic of China. As we sit here, I can only say that the systems for health in West Africa are very very fragile. We haven’t positioned ourselves strong enough to do what China did and we’ll definitely need some support. We never had source for emergency response when the problem started but Government has done a lot to put in protective equipment especially for our health workers working in the frontline.” He said
The masks and other coronavirus supplies to Nigeria were being sent by a Chinese construction company, CCECC, as parts of its corporate social responsibility efforts to help Nigeria combat the coronavirus pandemic.
CCECC, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, is in charge of a number of Nigeria’s major railway construction projects.
In the last few weeks, China has donated coronavirus testing kits to Cambodia, sent planeloads of ventilators, masks and medics to Italy and France, pledged to help the Philippines, Spain and other countries, and deployed medics to Iran and Iraq.
The Chinese president, Xi Jinping, has offered comforting words, telling the Spanish prime minister, Pedro Sánchez, that “sunshine comes after the storm”, and adding that the two countries should step up cooperation and exchanges after the outbreak.
As the coronavirus outbreak spreads and countries struggle to respond, China has positioned itself as a leader and benefactor in public health, building the kind of soft power Beijing needs at a time of intensifying US-China rivalry and scrutiny of Chinese influence around the world