By Stanley Onyekwere
The ongoing fight against the spread of Coronavirus otherwise known as COVID-19 pandemic in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) received a boost yesterday, following the completion and presentation of 506 bed spaces Covid-19 Isolation and Treatment Centre.
The facility, equipped with ventilators , mobile x-rays and ultra sound machines, is the unoccupied four storey Railway School building, at Idu Railway Terminal, a strategic location for Abuja outskirts.
Commissioning the facility, the FCT Minister, Muhammad Bello explained that it was a private sector intervention, coordinated by the FCT-Abuja Ministerial Expert Advisory Committee on COVID-19 to contain the pandemic in the nation’s capital.
Bello who disclosed that FCT was almost having ‘a redundancy of bed spaces’ with about 1000 bed spaces to 356 COVID-19 patients.
He however admonished residents to observe all protocols so that the pandemic does not escalate to make the available facilities inadequate for containment.
He noted that the FCT Administration is working very hard to stop the escalation of COVID-19 pandemic in the territory, stressing that there would be strict enforcement of all protocols to control the spread of the disease and urged all the residents of the FCT to take the fight against the pandemic as a personal fight for survival.
According to him, in addition to the provision of medical facilities, FCTA was also providing palliative items to the most vulnerable and poorest of the poor in the Territory to cushion the effect of the Covid-19 pandemic on them.
“As you are aware in the last one week all process of gradual easing of lockdown has commence in FCT. However, this has shown that the wider community is not very compliant with respect to social distancing and other protocols.
“So I want to use this opportunity based on what we have here and what we have at Asokoro Hospital as well as what we have at Karu General Hospital to say that we have enough redundancy of bed space but that should not make us to be complacent.
“Because if we do not continue with what we are doing now with a lot of restrictions and compliance then if this thing get out of hand we may wake up and found that the facilities we have might not be enough,” Bello cautioned.
Earlier, the Chairman, FCT Ministerial Expert Advisory Committee on COVID-19, Dr. Aliyu Modibbo Umar enjoined stakeholders to be committed to the ongoing fight against the pandemic and assured that his team would not relax until COVID-19 was contained in the FCT and the country at large.
“At the inauguration of this Committee the FCT Minister charged us to mobilise human financial and material resources to augment and compliment what the FCTA is doing in the fight against Covid-19 pandemic
“In particular the Minister task us to takeover the unoccupied Railway School facility at Idu terminal to liaise with the FCTA to transform it into Covid-19 Isolation and Treatment centre within the shortest possible time”, he said.