Nigeria has played host to the first inaugural meeting of the governing board of the Regional Centre for Disease Control, RCDC, as ECOWAS gets ready to site the Regional Centre for Disease Control in the country.
The meeting was officially opened yesterday in Abuja by the Minister of Health, Professor Issac Adewole.
Adewole said that the meeting was a symbolic start for the RCDC operation in the sub-region because of the manner in which Nigeria tackled the Ebola outbreak in the country.
The minister said, ‘’it is a symbolic start of the operations for the RCDC, an institution brought forth by ECOWAS Heads of State and governments to protect our citizens and to keep them safe.”
He explained that the decision to establish the RCDC was reached following the devastating impact of the outbreak of Ebola Virus Disease, EVD, in West Africa, with far reaching economic effects in the most three affected countries in our region”
‘’The outbreak exposed the weaknesses of our health systems and indicated a lack of readiness to respond effectively to EVD or any other serious health security threat in line with the core capacities outlined by the international Health Regulations, IHR.”
According to the minister, Nigeria’s role in curtailing the spread of new threats of diseases like Lassa fever, yellow fever and Zika virus outbreaks in the region is acknowledged by ECOWAS’ decision to site the RCDC here in Nigeria.
Adewole further gave a promise that Nigeria will provide an enabling environment for the efficient and effective implementation and functioning of the RCDC, adding that the African Union has designated the centre as the coordinating centre for the Africa Centre for Disease Control.
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Source:: Nigerian Pilot