The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, has said the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has exposed some neglected basic infrastructure in Nigeria.
Mr Mustapha while responding to questions at the daily PTF briefing on Monday said the country will not remain the same again once the outbreak is over.
”I think after COVID-19, Nigeria will not be the same again because there are some basic infrastructure that we have neglected for a very very long time and I believe that, this will help us in putting those infrastructures in place.
”So that in case we have another disaster, we will be able to work as a team and as a nation to ensure that in whatever we need to do, there are processes, there are allocations and there are enumerations that have been conducted about the kind of people that should benefit from certain categories of palliatives,” he said.
Mr Mustapha also said developed countries like the United States of America (USA) were able to distribute palliatives “because they have the infrastructure in place.”
”In America, people are entitled to certain palliatives because they have an infrastructure, they have a system that helps them in determining what you can benefit from,” he said.
Mr Mustapha was recently in the news for the wrong reasons when he said he never knew how bad Nigeria’s healthcare infrastructure had become.
“I can tell you for sure, I never knew that our entire healthcare infrastructure was in the state in which it is until I was appointed to do this work,” Mr Mustapha had said at a meeting with the leadership of the National Assembly.
His statement drew a lot of criticism though he later said his remark was misinterpreted.
The outbreak of COVID-19 has brought to the forefront the decay in some of the country’s sectors, especially the health sector.
As of Monday evening, Nigeria has recorded 665 cases of COVID-19 out of 188 people have recovered. About 22 people have died from the disease.
‘Far from over’
Mr Mustapha noted that the COVID-19 outbreak is far from over in Nigeria.
He said the country must do more on increasing testing, isolating confirmed cases and following up with contacts of cases.
”Given the increase in the number of confirmed cases in the last week, the PTF remains conscious of the fact that we are far from the end of this outbreak in Nigeria.
”We, therefore, must focus even more vigorously on our strategy of increasing testing, isolating confirmed cases, following up with contacts of cases and managing confirmed cases to recovery,” he said.