The United Nations has donated €80,000 (N32.5) worth of medical equipment and supplies to the Nigerian government as part of its assistance in the fight against coronavirus.
The materials include a diagnostic machine and kits, chemical reagents and laboratory consumables, biosafety supplies like laboratory cabinet and personnel protection equipment amongst others.
Mr Geofrey Onyeama, the Nigerian Foreign Affairs Minister made this known while briefing the Presidential Taskforce in Abuja on Friday.
The Minister disclosed that the consignment was secured by the Nigerian permanent representative to the UN, Prof. Tijjani Mohammad-Bande from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), a UN Agency.
Onyeama in his statement said, “Our Permanent Representative to the United Nations in Vienna has been able to secure from International Atomic Energy Agency a donation of €80,000 worth of medical equipment and supplies to assist the COVID-19 response.”
The IAEA Director-General, Mr Rafael Mariano Grossi said the Agency was delivering the first batch of the consignment to Nigeria and more than 40 other countries to enable them to use a nuclear-derived technique to speedily detect the dreaded virus.
Mr Grossi said, the first batch of supplies is worth €4 million, and would help the countries use the techniques known as a real-time reverse transcription-polymerase chain reaction, a sensitive technique for detecting viruses currently available.
He further explained that the IAEA is working round the clock to ensure that critical types of equipment like these are delivered as quickly as possible.
Emergency assistance is part of the IAEA’s response to a request for support from around 90 members state in controlling an increasing number of infections worldwide.