The Chairman of the House Committee on Health, Tanko Sununu, said that Nigerians are “always in denial”, asking the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 to follow the same route that the National Primary Health Care Development Agency took to achieve polio eradication in the country to combat COVID-19.
He said stakeholders could be utilised to engage Nigerians to enlighten them about the coronavirus.
Sununu stated this on the Politics Today programme on Channels Television in reaction to the government’s steps towards curbing the spread of the virus.
He said, “If you look at it, Nigerians are always in denial, when government and heads of organisations said there was polio, people tried to say no and it became a serious issue.
“What did the government do? It resorted to creating communities headed by traditional rulers, religious organisations, preaching and preaching to people until they realised and accepted it as a reality that it is not something we are trying to do to their health.
“Now, today we are proud to say we have eradicated polio in the country and that former set up is still there.
“I think the PTF should just reactivate the avenue that was used by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency to achieve the eradication of polio, to strengthen the fight against COVID-19.”
Praising the government’s efforts in the fight against COVID-19 Sununu said that the country only had four labs but now had “over 100 laboratories distributed nation-wide that can effectively diagnose COVID-19”.
“Not only that, when we came, we had very few isolation centres and ICU’s in the country. As of today, government and non-governmental organisations came together, and we can now say we have multiple isolation centres that are functional”.