The Defence Headquarters has disclosed that the Armed Forces of Nigeria have deployed additional 220 medical personnel to support the effort of government in tackling the novel Coronavirus pandemic across the country.
The Coordinator, Defence Media Operations, Maj.-Gen. John Enenche stated this at a news conference on the operations of the Nigerian military on Thursday in Abuja.
Enenche said it was necessary to train additional personnel in selected hospitals to boost the capacity of medical personnel in the management of COVID-19 due to rising cases of the pandemic in the country.
He explained that the training package was a Train-the-Trainer, where the beneficiaries were expected to train other personnel at hospitals, related medical facilities and other places of deployment.
According to him, the Armed Forces of Nigeria COVID-19 case management/IPC training will be conducted in 8 designated military centres across the country.
They are Headquarters 1 Division Kaduna, 6 Division Port Harcourt, 7 Division Maiduguri, 81 Division Lagos and Headquarters 82 Division Enugu.
“Others are Headquarters Eastern Naval Command Calabar, Headquarters Tactical Air Command Makurdi and Headquarters Guards Brigade Abuja.
“At the end of this training, the total number will be 300 personnel.
“Recall that at the commencement of Armed Forces of Nigeria’s intervention in the containment of COVID-19 pandemic, it made available 21 medical facilities to be used as isolation and treatment centres.
“Additionally, 80 medical personnel were concentrated in Abuja and trained on COVID-19 case Management/Infection Prevention and Control (IPC), who were thereafter deployed to different geo-political zones of the country and the FCT,” he said.
Enenche also disclosed that the present reality occasioned by the spread of COVID-19 had altered the mode of military operations across the country.
He added that the military had adopted the COVID-19 prevention strategy in dealing with terrorists or bandits who either surrendered or were captured.
He added that they were being quarantined either at the correctional centres or any other facility.
According to him, whether the captured or surrendered enemy, they have to be treated with standard procedure and it is in line with the Geneva Convention.
“For the overall safety of the troops, if somebody is surrendering, you give social distancing and then give him the directive to move forward and then give him facemask.
“That is why we have produced face masks in thousands and sent to the North East and other operational areas.
“So, it has changed the face of our operations to be in compliance with COVID-19 standard,” he said.