President Muhammadu Buhari has assured of Nigeria’s commitment to global efforts to rapidly bring the Novel Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19) pandemic to an end.
President Buhari made this commitment in the solidarity messages passed on to the leaders of three diplomatic allies of Nigeria, which had recently become victims of the outbreak, pledging Nigeria’s unbroken solidarity with them.
The President, on Sunday, sent messages to Presidents Hassan Rouhani and Moon Jae-in of Iran and South Korea respectively, and the Prime Minister of Italy, Guiseppo Conte, expressing Nigeria’s sympathies with their countries.
It would be recalled that Iran, Italy and South Korea had in the last few days recorded some of the highest numbers of cases of confirmed cases of the COVID-19 and some considerably high numbers of death.
In the messages, as captured in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, President Buhari said the Nigerian government will continue to diligently carry out its duty to the international community by ensuring that the spread of the disease is curtailed.
The President also encouraged Nigerians to continue to show support to citizens of all the countries who are resident in Nigeria.
According to him, “there is no cause for panic. Italy, South Korea and Iran remain Nigeria’s allies in good and bad times.”
President Buhari, while commending the three countries on their efforts to contain the virus, expressed confidence that, “with the support of the World Health Organisation and other global agencies all working together to contain the virus, it will only be a matter of time before the world sees an end to this disease.”
The Nigerian leader noted that, “so far, there have been no known cases of the disease on Nigerian soil, but for the penetration of a lone foreign national found to be a carrier of the virus.”
He also commended the diligent efforts of the federal, state health officials as well as ports and border personnel in keeping Nigeria safe from the epidemic.
In fulfilment of the President’s promise to give the health authorities all that they need to keep Nigeria clear of the virus, the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning confirmed making the second approved payment in the sum N620 million last Friday, bringing the total payments made so far to N984 million.