COVID-19: Nigerian doctors blow hot, oppose presence of Chinese doctors

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On Friday the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) said it was not satisfied by the President Muhammdu Buhari administration’s reasons for inviting a medical team from China.

The body made this declaration while restating its opposition to the Chinese doctors’ presence in Nigeria due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

The Nigerian Medical Association pointed out what it called discrepancies in the statement issued by the company which funded the trip, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation (CCECC) and comments made by the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire.

Dr. Francis Faduyile, President of Nigerian Medical Association in a release, demanded a thorough screening of the so-called medical team of experts by the Medical and Dental Council of Nigeria (MDCN) and other relevant regulatory bodies to verify their status.

It called on the federal government to publish the names, designations/status, and qualifications of the medical team.

While expressing support for donor support and equipment, Nigerian Medical Association kicked against the disclosure that the medical personnel will be treating Chinese workers in their facilities.

“We wish also to ask when Medical expatriates started coming to Sovereign States to treat her nationals? What happens to the Nigerians working in those facilities?

“We are aware that the Chinese team will provide ‘CCECC employees with critical and necessary healthcare assistance’, as stated by the Managing Director of CCECC.”

Faduyile noted that it does not seem likely that the team will not have contact with Nigerian patients as the Presidential Task Force (PTF) as CCECC has Nigerian workers among its employees.

“The Government has continued to ‘shift the post’ in explanation regarding this Chinese invitation. First, it was that these were mere donations, then to experts rendering assistance to set up test laboratories and now to the experts treating patients. No country allows foreigners to jump on their patients and manage without regulation”, he said.

NMA advised the PTF to take into account the concerns of Nigerians, including all the professional bodies that have spoken out against the Chinese team visit.

Faduyile assured that the association will continue to monitor the situation and shall not hesitate to do whatever is necessary to protect suffering fellow citizens against any form of medical exploitation.

“We reaffirm our belief in the ability of the Nigerian healthcare professionals especially those at the frontlines to continue to do their best for our country as we continue to reject this ‘Greek Gift’ from CCECC at this time.”

NMA called on Nigerians to mount pressure on the Buhari government to provide adequate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to frontline healthcare workers and not share it among the political class.

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