Nigeria – Setting up committee on Ebola treatment

August 7, 2014 10:20 am0 commentsViews: 14

Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, Minister of Health

Nigeria Federal Government on Monday began the search for the treatment of Ebola Virus Disease with the inauguration of a six-man ‘Working Group’ to carry out research on the treatment of the virus.
Prof. Onyebuchi Chukwu, Nigeria minister of health inaugurated the committee to be co-chaired by Prof. Karniyus Gamanie, the Director-General of the National Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development Abuja, and Professor Innocent Ujah, the Director-General of Nigerian Institute for Medical Research.
As listed by the minister as members of the committee are the Project Coordinator for the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, the Director of Public Health in the Ministry of Health and the Director of Health Planning, Research and Statistics in the Ministry of Health.
The minister also said the committee could recruit technical persons to assist it in its work.
The Minister also used the occasion to affirm that there was yet no known cure for the Ebola infection.
Against recent speculations in the media, Professor Chukwu also declared that was no “no scientific evidence” that eating bitter kola could cure the Ebola infection.
Reports that suggested bitter kola could cure Ebola infection based on a research conducted in 1989 by a Pharmacology and former Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Prof. Maurice Iwu has been circulating in the social media for the past few days.
But while acknowledging the report, the Minister said the research is inconclusive. Nevertheless, he named Iwu as one of the members of the committee to find cure for EVD.
“We have taken note that Iwu’s research has not been concluded.
“We also feel that in addition to mass enlightenment, we should not neglect the issue of research on Ebola disease,” said the minister.
Chukwu who said researches were going on worldwide on vaccines for the treatment of the virus gave the terms of reference of the committee to include conducting research into the treatment of the Ebola virus.
According to him, the committee should receive and verify claims relating to the treatment of the disease, including uncompleted researches carried out in 1989 in the US by Iwu and his team.
Professor Chukwu added that the Committee should also gather and analyse related research findings across the world.
He added that the committee was free to collaborate with similar centres around the world in the discharge of its mandates.
He also said the committee was also expected to advice government on appropriate measures to curtail the spread of the virus.
The Chairman of the Committee promised that members would do the utmost to carry out the assignment.

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