As part of its commitment to complement the Federal Government efforts in combatting coronavirus, COVID-19 pandemic in the country, the private sector-led Coalition against COVID-19 (CACOVID), yesterday donated testing equipment worth N1.4 billion to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC.
The Chairman of Dangote Group, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, who made the presentation to the NCDC in Lagos for on behalf of CACOVID said the testing materials were meant for all Nigerians across the country.
Zouera Youssoufou, the Chief Executive Officer of Aliko Dangote Foundation, ADF who represented Dangote said: “The test kits would be able to take care of 26000 tests across the country. We are giving this to the NCDC who is responsible for managing this kind of disease. It will distribute the whole materials to the various ministry of health across the country.”
Continuing she said: “ The materials being donated today include: Real-Time PCR System, Gloves, Latex, RNA Extraction Kits, four well PCR strips, 96 well semi- skirted PCR Plates, 0.5 -10ul(96 Rack), 100 -1000ul (768/pack) (4/box), Oral and Nasal Swab Sets, Tongue Depressors and Viral Transport Media. All these are worth N1.4 billion.
Meanwhile, the Dangote Group, through the Aliko Dangote Foundation had offered to help hands to the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 to provide testing for the Nigerian returnees, to help curb the spread of the virus in the country.
The Foundation has since May this year, assisted the PTF to conduct tests for over 500 Nigerian returnees to determine and ensure adequate isolation of the virus-positive patients were necessary across the country.
Youssoufou disclosed that since the outbreak of the pandemic, the Foundation has daily, been distributing bread to the vulnerable ones in the society, an indication of the company’s goal to reach and sustain connection with the people.
“The decision to offer help to the PTF to help them test returning Nigerians is yet another step in the Company’s Corporate Social Responsibility programme, not only to develop the economic welfare of the Group subsidiaries host communities, but also to build a meaningful relationship with the people. The Foundation had earlier donated a 500-bed space isolation center, mobile testing laboratory, 10 Ambulances and three official vehicles as part of its corporate support to Kano State.”
Youssoufou said the donation of food to host communities was synonymous with the company’s CSR activities in Nigeria. “We realised that this is an unusual time and the pandemic has distorted the economy of everyone, so we now decided to provide the food relief materials to the Group subsidiaries’host communities.”
According to her, this is the usual way that the company reciprocates the cordial relationship that it enjoys from the host communities, pointing out that the Group through the Foundation has so far assisted in the testing of over 1,000 people in Kano State, and provided Personal Protection Equipment (PPE), ambulances, and SUVs in some other states in the northern part of the country.
She also hinted that ADF had signed an agreement with the United Nations to purchase $4 million worth of testing supplies on behalf of CACOVID, while noting that the Foundation’s mission is to enhance opportunities for social change through strategic investments that improve health and wellbeing, promote quality education, and broaden economic empowerment opportunities.