An NGO, the Sir Emeka Offor Foundation has donated 100 sets of hospital beds worth N48.5 million to the Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital (ABUTH), Zaria to equip the hospital’s COVID-19 Treatment Centre.
Presenting the items to the management of ABUTH, Zaria, Kaduna State, the Chairman and Chief Executive of the NGO, Sir Emeka Offor said the gesture was meant to support the hospital to have a standard and befitting Coronavirus Treatment Centre.
Offor, who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Rtd. AIG Chris Ezike, said the foundation will also foot the bill for transporting and installing the beds.
He recalled that the foundation which was founded in 1990 and incorporated in 2003 was rendering assistance to people in need not only in Nigeria but in the whole of Africa.
Offor said: “We stand on a tripod, we do health and human services, we do education and educational development and we also do empowerment.
“As a matter of fact, in the last nine years, we have distributed books to universities, polytechnics, colleges of education and secondary schools in Nigeria and 18 other African countries valued at 30 million US dollars.
“Ahmadu Bello University has been a beneficiary of our books distribution. This year, 2020, we decided to incorporate distribution of health, medical supplies and medical equipment.
“And we started with 14 containers, each container is valued N150 million and several health institutions in Nigeria have benefited.”
The Chief Executive Officer explained that: “Ahmadu Bello University Teaching Hospital (ABUTH) approached the foundation with respect to COVID-19 assistance, we felt we should come in and assist.”
He said the beds were supposed to be imported from the United States of America, but the suppliers quickly responded that: “we may not be able to receive the beds until 2021 because, the orders they have all over the world, they may not be able to meet up.
“So, we became ingenious, searched and discovered that Kaduna Furniture Company can manufacture the beds, we now entered into contract with them.
“No body knows when COVID-19 is going away, what we are doing is to be proactive, we facilitating the procurement and shipment of drugs and supplies to about 16 designated hospitals in Nigeria and ABUTH is one of them.
“Four containers have left as at this morning and we are hoping that using the fastest shipping line, in 28 days, we should be talking about clearing.”
He appreciated the Federal Ministry of Health, Federal of Ministry of Finance, NAFDAC, Customs, Standard Organisation of Nigeria (SON) for fast-tracking the processes to be able to ensure collectively COVID-19 was mitigated.
The Vice-Chancellor, ABU, Prof. Kabir Bala appreciated the kind gesture of Emeka Effor Foundation for finding ABUTH worthy of the donation.
Prof. Hamidu Umdagas, Chief Medical Director (CMD), ABUTH said that in spite of the fact that the hospital had no centre for COVID-19 yet, they treat patients suffering from the disease.
He said the hospital had successfully treated and discharged six out of the eight COVID-19 patients from the hospital.
Also contributing, the Permanent Secretary, Kaduna State Ministry of Health, Alhaji Shu’aibu Mahmud lauded the collaboration between ABUTH and Kaduna State on the fight against coronavirus.