2 Mr Tahir Hashim, the Assistant Secretary General, NLC, presented an ‘Overview of C19SM Social Mobilisation for the Update of COVID-19 Testing and Vaccination at Work Guidelines on the virus Prevention and Control’ at a 2day training held in Ilorin on Monday.
3 Hashim explained that the programme was aimed at upscaling awareness campaign for more Nigerians to be tested and vaccinated.
4 He disclosed that “as at Feb. 28, there has been 434,154,739 confirmed cases of COVID-19 globally with 5,944,342 deaths reported by World Health Organisation (WHO) out of which Nigeria has 254,560 confirmed cases with 3,142 deaths”.
6 “There is no cure for COVID-19. However, vaccines are available to reduce morbidity and mortality.
7 “The non-pharmaceutical measures include wearing nose mask, physical distancing and frequent hand washing, general and respiratory hygiene are some of the effective ways of preventing the spread of COVID-19 virus,” he said.
8 On the training, Hashim noted that the management of COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria continues to evolve in the light of changing circumstances and risks posed to the health systems and economy.
9 “The development of guidelines has been necessitated by the spread and consequences of the virus in Nigeria and the world at large.
10 “It is also in realisation of the key roles which governments, employers and workers can play in ensuring safe and healthy practices in work place and as well to provide information on strategies for the containment of the spread and the mitigation of the impact of COVID-19 in Nigeria.
Hashim informed that the global funded sponsored-programme was targeted at training over 200 peer educators, who are expected to replicate same in at least 20 persons in their various organisations for the message to percolate the grassroots.
12 He declared that Occupational Safety and Health Department of Federal Ministry of Labour and Employment would continue to train and equip factory inspectors in collaboration with relevant stakeholders for effective and safe monitoring, as well support compliance with the guidelines as the battle against COVID-19 continues.
13 Earlier, Mr Issa-Ore, the Kwara NLC Chairman, stated that COVID-19 has ravaged the world while adverse effect was devastating since its outbreak in 2019.
He expressed worry about the lingering COVID-19 outbreak, saying that it is against this backdrop that the leadership of NLC in partnership with other organisations like NCDC and NACA organised the training to scale up preventive measures.
14 While advising participants to make use of whatever they learnt judiciously, Ore said: “When we thought we were overcoming it, scientists discovered another variant, which was stronger and killing faster than COVID-19.
“We appreciate the Nigerian government for its foresight, and to have worked assiduously with States and other countries in sharing information towards ameliorating the virus transmission.
15 “With the training, participants will undergo series of presentations with facts and figures on the effects of the disease.
16 “Valuable suggestions would be made available to assist Nigerians, and the world at large to overcome the crisis,” Ore said.
In her goodwill message, Jessica Akinrongbe, Senior Emergency Response Officer for Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) Abuja, spoke of the readiness of NCDC to partner NLC in the fight against the virus.
“Our hope is that at the end of the training, people would be able to realise that if you save a family, you save a nation,” she added.