AFRICA/NIGERIA - 425 health facilities made available by the Church as part of the fight against Covid-19 unused

Tuesday, 16 February 2021 coronavirus   local churches  

Abuja (Agenzia Fides) - 425 hospitals and clinics made available last year by the Nigerian Episcopal Conference as isolation centers in the fight against Covid-19 have not been used by the government, denounces a note from the local bishops.
"The government, in its incompetence, has never appreciated this important sacrifice made by the Church and has never used the various structures made available, nor has it shown any gratitude whatsoever in this regard. and yet the Church has continued to offer comfort and assistance to the poor in rural areas and wherever they are", says a statement issued on the occasion of the World Day of the Sick, signed by the Church and Society Director of the Bishops' Conference, Fr. Uchechukwu Obodoechina,
The presidential task force dedicated to monitoring the Covid-19 had encouraged the 36 governors of the country on May 11 to ask the Church to access its health structures, indicating that some of them could be unable to cope with the number of potentially registered corona virus cases in their states.
Fr. Obodoechina complains that "the government should have been able to subsidize the structures of the Church, to equip them to provide 100% of health services to all in rural areas, because, ultimately, the services are for Nigerian citizens". "The government has maintained a dysfunctional health system - adds the priest - . We ask the government to review the need to collaborate with the Church".
In the meantime, the Presidential Coronavirus Task Force (PTF) has claimed that the deaths of 24 Covid-19 patients in one day should be a wake-up call to Nigerians confirming that the deadly virus is still in circulation. The head of the PTF has called for new protective measures to contain the pandemic, including a reduction of half the attendance in places of worship, which should therefore only be able to accommodate 50% of their capacity while meetings in closed places should not exceed 50 participants. (L.M.) (Agenzia Fides, 16/2/2021)