The Japanese Government has signed an $18.2 million grant agreement with the Federal Government to support Nigeria in its fight against diseases and viruses.
According to a statement released from the Ministry of Budget and National Planning, the agreement was signed to strengthen the capacity of the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control for accurate medical and laboratory investigations.
The agreement was signed by the Minister of State for Budget and National Planning, Clem Agba on behalf of Nigeria and Japanese Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Yutaka Kikuta on behalf of Japan.
While speaking during the signing, Agba commended the Japanese government for fulfilling the promise made by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to Nigeria in Tokyo, last year. The minister made known that the signing was timely due to the recent coronavirus outbreak that has generated concerns globally.
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He said this signing would help support the government’s efforts in combating diseases such as coronavirus. Speaking further, Agba went on to reassure the Japanese ambassador of Nigeria’s commitment to sustaining the bilateral relationship while creating an enabling environment between the two countries.
Also commenting during the signing was Kikuta, who emphasized that the agreement was to support the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control to strengthen its surveillance of infectious diseases and improve its capacity for early responses to public health concerns in Nigeria.
Why this matters: The deadly virus, COVID19, which started from Wuhan in China, is spreading fast across the world. Preventive measures are being taken by countries, governments, businesses, and so on. This is why the agreement is a welcome one as it would help the government in facilitating and controlling the spread of the virus while giving diagnosis and quarantine when necessary.
Reports have it that there is a total of 90,936 confirmed cases worldwide of the Coronavirus disease. Although more than half of the cases are people who have recovered, China still has the highest number of about 80,151 people. South Korea follows China with 4,812, then Italy, Iran and Japan among others. The total death toll stands at 3,117 with 2,936 of those coming from China.