PHOTO: Nigerian Armed Forces Produce 18,000 PPE Kits to Fight Covid-19 Pandemic
1. The devastating pandemic of COVID 19 has brought a lot of hardship, agony and pains across the globe. The national response to the fight against this virus is not without challenges, ranging from a thorough understanding of the disease to the astronomically high demand for personal protective equipment, mechanical ventilators and other materials to manage the Pandemic.
2. Therefore, in response to the CDS directive to the Armed Forces to articulate strategic intervention to support the FGN fight against the COVID 19 Pandemic, the Defence Industries Corporation of Nigeria (DICON) has taken the lead among others, to provide a local content driven response to address the shortage of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) in Nigeria. Additional to its primary responsibility to produce defence equipment, DICON has succeeded in diversifying its human, equipment, machinery as well as research and development capacity, to support a much-needed strategic intervention to cushion the effects of the highly dreaded COVID 19 in the country.
4. Furthermore, DICON has responded to the directive by Honorable Minister of Defence Maj Gen Bashir Magashi (rtd) for the Armed Forces to support the indigenous capacity of Nigeria, to support Medical workers by producing thousands of high quality non permeable Personal Protective Equipment kit. Each unit of these kits consists of standardized gowns, face shield and nose masks. They are currently being produced in large quantities for use by Kaduna State Government and other national stakeholders.
6. Suffice to note that these inventions by DICON including those by other military institutions of the Nigerian Army, Navy and Air force as well as Nigerian Defence Academy have given bright hope to Nigeria healthcare infrastructure on the fight against COVID 19.
7. Let me at this juncture inform you that the efforts of DICON in producing these array of COVID 19 equipment has been assessed, commended and approved by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 Mr Boss Mustapha, the Minister of Health, Prof Osagie Ehanire and Permanent Secretary; General Service Office (GSO) Sir Olusegun Adekunle. All the samples of COVID-19 essential and life saving equipment will be unveiled at the end of this briefing.
8. As DICON and other military institutions continue their drive to support our national effort to defeat COVID-19, the CDS hereby urge Federal and State Governments to patronize the local content initiative of the Armed Forces of Nigeria. He has therefore directed all the Armed Forces to liase with DICON for mass production of all prototypes of COVID-19 PPEs for national application.
9. The CDS hereby wish to commend the innovative and local content break through which reflects the dedication and diligence of Management and Staff of DICON. As more progress is made in the fight against this deadly virus, the High Command of the Armed Forces of Nigeria encourages the general public to practice the rules of social distancing and personal hygiene in line with the advice of the PTF on COVID 19, Federal Ministry of Health and health professionals.
10. Thank you and God bless.
Defence Media Operations
20 April 2020