The Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH) on Friday advised traditional medicine practitioners to work as a team, to improve the health care delivery system in Nigeria.
Sen. Olorunnibe Mamora, the Minister of State for Health, gave the advice in Abuja, at the opening of the 2019 African Traditional Medicine Day, organised by the African Traditional Medicine Department of the Ministry of Health.
The three-day event is expected to promote and exhibit traditional herbal practitioners in Nigeria, and their products to the world.
The theme of the celebration is “Integration of Traditional Medicine in the Curricular of Health Sciences Students in Universities in the African Region.”
Mamora said there was the need to close the gap between traditional practices and change in attitude, required for an effective team, to achieve such a great ambition for Nigeria.
He called on the traditional medicine practitioners to aim at providing exceptional health care by adopting wide team-based culture, in which certain values and principles were shared and transparently communicated among themselves.
The minister, however, said that the practitioners should see themselves as labourers in the vineyard of health; there should be no superiority, rather, they should work on the unity of purpose and avoid collusion.
In her goodwill message, the Director-General, National Agency for Food and Drugs Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Prof. Mojisola Adeyeye, said that the agency would continue to sensitise herbal medicine practitioners in Nigeria toward safeguarding public health.
Adeyeye said that NAFDAC would be strict in the regulation and control of herbal products, to facilitate its development and contribution to the national health care delivery system in Nigeria.
She noted that to further ensure safety and quality of herbal medicine, the agency had inaugurated a Scientific Committee to deliberate and report on additional analytical tests, that could be conducted in addition to others highlighted under Laboratory Analysis.
Adeyeye said that NAFDAC was in the process of renewing a Memorandum of Understanding with the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development (NIPRD), for research collaboration on herbal medicines.
“These activities and collaborations will greatly facilitate translation of the low-hanging fruit of our biodiversity, into palatable public health commodities.
“Evidently, NAFDAC is totally committed to ensuring that only safe traditional herbal medicinal products of good quality are available to the general public,” she said.
In her address of welcome, Mrs Zainab Shariff, Director, Traditional Medicine Department FMOH, said that the decision to observe the Day followed the adoption in 2000, of a resolution on promoting the role of traditional medicine in the health systems by the region’s ministers.
Shariff noted that the image and profile of traditional medicine received a boost in Africa in 2001 in Abuja; adding that the Heads of State declared traditional medicine research a priority, and followed up by designating the period 2001 to 2010 as the Decade of African Traditional Medicine.
She disclosed that Nigeria had joined other African countries to mark the Day each year with sensitisation, advocacy and awareness campaigns in Nigerian traditional medicine.
The director said that Nigeria had continued to show commendable progress in the area of traditional medicine.
The Nigeria News Agency reports that the event was an avenue to discuss issues regarding the development of indigenous herbal plants among policy makers.
Team Europe mobilizing 443 mln euros to support Cambodia in COVID-19 crisis
Team Europe is mobilizing 443 million euros (about 502 million United States dollars) in grants and loans to help Cambodia fight against coronavirus or COVID-19, and mitigate its socio-economic effects, said its press statement on Thursday.
Team Europe is the combined effort of the European Union, its member states and their financial institutions and implementing agencies to help mitigate the spread of the virus and to reduce spillover effects on economic and social stability in partner countries, the statement said.
Together, they provide significant financial and technical support to help Cambodia address immediate needs, protect the most vulnerable, mitigate the socio-economic impact of the coronavirus crisis and prepare for recovery, it said.
European Union Ambassador to Cambodia Carmen Moreno said the coronavirus pandemic demands cooperation and solidarity, and that Team Europe stands together with Cambodia in these challenging times.
“We have to work together to ensure a sustainable and strong economic recovery, and to help mitigate the impact of this pandemic on human lives, jobs and livelihoods,” she said in the statement.
According to the statement, Team Europe said it strongly supports the World Health Organization and contributes to finance its programs in Cambodia.
The Southeast Asian country has so far confirmed a total of 126 cases of COVID-19, with 125 patients cured and one remained hospitalized, according to the Ministry of Health.
COVID-19: Joint Task Team warns transporters against conveying illicit goods, passengers
The Plateau Commissioner of Police, Mr Edward Ebuka, JTTT Chairman in the state, gave the warning at the inauguration of the committee in Jos on Monday.
Ebuka, who was represented by the Deputy Commissioner of Police (Administration), Mr Warebi Owatorufa, said that any transporter caught would be decisively dealt with.
He said that the committee would be thorough and committed in ensuring that the purpose for its establishment was met.
The Plateau Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development, Dr Istifanus Finangwai, who inaugurated the team also commended the Federal Government for the initiative.
Finangwai lauded Federal Government’s proactive steps in ensuring that agricultural business, which was central to human existence, go on unhindered during the pandemic.
The commissioner, however, advised the team to go about its responsibilities without compromise.
He said that the state government had on its part, created an enabling environment for farmers to take advantage of the natural endowments of the state.
Finangwai pointed out that Plateau was blessed with fertile soil, where almost all the products produced from the state were considered to be one of the best if not the best in the country and beyond.
“Plateau Government will liaise with you in ensuring that you succeed in this assignment.
“Government will frown where there is compromise,” he said.
Akwashiki, who is the Secretary of the JTTT, said that the team was to devise strategies to ensure that food and agricultural products reached all parts of the country during the lockdown.
“The Honourable Ministers of Agriculture, Defence, Interior and Police Affairs met on April 20, 2020 and after in-depth deliberation, came up with a Joint Technical Task Team (JTTT).
“Others are the National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW), The Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), the Nigerian Association of Road Transport Owners and the Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (FMARD) was set up at the national level.
“The JTTT is to be replicated at both the state and local government area levels throughout the country,” he said.
According to him, the team would come up with strategies that would ensure minimal impact of COVID-19 pandemic on the year 2020 farming season in line with the directive of Mr President.
Akwashiki added that all the occupants of vehicles conveying food and agricultural inputs must have protective and sanitary items such as face masks, sanitisers and tissue papers.
He emphasised that those were part of the items to be checked by security agents at checkpoints before granting access to any truck.
Edited By: Abiodun Esan/Adeleye Ajayi (NAN)
COVID-19: CP inaugurates Task Team on Petrol, Agricultural products movement in Imo
The Commissioner of Police, Isaac Akinmoyede on Wednesday inaugurated the National Joint Technical Task Team on Emergency response to COVID-19 Challenges on Agricultural and Petroleum Products Movement Imo Chapter.
The Commissioner, who is the Chairman of the team, inaugurated performed the inauguration at the conference hall of the Federal Ministry of Agriculture in Owerri.
The CP was represented by the Assistant Commissioner of Police, Mr Hamman Barka at the ceremony.
He said the team was established as a result of challenges encountered in the movement of petroleum and agricultural products into the country due to lockdown and closure of borders caused by coronavirus.
Akinmoyede said the presidency was worried about the challenges which if not addressed, might cause much hunger in the country.
He charged members of the team to take the assignment seriously to enable government check food scarcity during the lockdown and closure of borders across the country.
Speaking, the Director, Federal Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, Mr Christian Iwuchukwu, said the team’s mandate was to ensure food security in the state during coronavirus pandemic period.
Iwuchukwu, who is the Secretary of the team, said the it had been inaugurated at the federal level with the Inspector-General of Police as Chairman.
He pointed out that the inauguration was a directive from the presidency that the team be replicated in all states of the federation, including the local governments.
In their different speeches, members of the team thanked the Federal Government for establishing and inaugurating the team in the state.
They said most of the agricultural and petroleum products came from outside the state which if not well handled, might hamper transportation of the items into the state which and cause hunger to the people.
Edited By: Maureen Atuonwu (NAN)
Lockdown: National Task Team warns against restriction of agric products
The Joint Technical Task Team on Emergency Response to COVID-19 has warned against restriction of movement of agricultural products across the country.
The team gave the warning when it carried out on-the-spot assessment of boundaries around the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), on Thursday.
The Chairman of the team, AIG Austin Agbonlahor, while briefing newsmen in Abuja after the tour, said the team would ensure that the directive on movement of agricultural products was followed.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the team visited Sabon Wuse in Niger State, Tafa in Kaduna State and Keffi in Nasarawa State to access the level of compliance.
Agbonlahor said that all food items, livestock and agricultural inputs were expected to be transported across States without hindrance to avoid any form of food crisis in the country.
“We have embarked on this assessment to ensure that the presidential guidelines on movement of agricultural products are strictly complied with.
“Part of the guidelines is that agricultural products and farmers should be allowed free movement and as mandated, we will ennsure compliance,” he said.
The Chairman charged security agents at checkpoints to thoroughly screen trucks to check contravention of the guidelines.
According to him, transporters of agricultural products are not expected to convey passengers or move items other than agricultural products.
He warned that any transporter caught working against the guideline would be dealt with.
“We are working to ensure that there is free flow of all vehicles or trucks carrying agricultural products and inputs.
“The only thing is that if we see trucks with food items carrying passengers, they must be stopped and checked because it is expected that vehicles carrying food must not carry passengers,” he said.
On reports of obstruction of food items in Imo and Edo states, the chairman said it was not particular to those two states but across the country.
He said that the team was in touch with commanders in the various states to ensure that the presidential guidelines on movement of agricultural products were adhered to.
” As for the Imo, we are already in touch with the Commissioner of Police and the Civil Defence Assistant Commandant General (ACG), and we also called the commander there,” he said.
Agbonlahor said though the team was in touch with security agencies and other stakeholders in the 36 states, it would not fail to deploy the team to states when necessary.
NAN reports that the Federal Government had on April 24, inaugurated a seven-man Joint Technical Task Team on Emergency Response to COVID-19 to ensure unrestricted movement of agricultural products.
The inter-ministerial team has membership from the media, security agencies, All Farmers Association of Nigeria (AFAN) and National Union of Road Transport Workers (NURTW) among others.
Edited By: Chidinma Agu/Felix Ajide (NAN)