The President of the Senate, Ahmad Lawan, on Thursday, accused the Federal Ministry of Health of not putting serious measures in place to prevent the outbreak of coronavirus in Nigeria.
He asked the Senate Committee on Primary Health Care to liaise with the ministry to intensify screening of passengers at the nation’s airports and seaports.
Lawan stated this following a point of order by the Deputy Senate Leader, Senator Ajayi Boroffice.
Boroffice drew the attention of the Senate to the failure of health personnel at the airports and seaports to screen passengers coming into the country.
The senator said the coronavirus screening at the South African airport usually take up to 30 minutes before passengers would be allowed to disembark the aircraft.
He said the situation was different on his arrival at the Nigerian airport, when the health officials at the nation’s airports merely issued a form to passengers to indicate if they were sick or not.
He said, “There is no form of any screening of passengers for coronavirus by Nigerian officials at the airport.
“It’s worrisome, situations where travellers coming into the country were not dully screened for the dreaded virus based on his experience at the airport.”
We carry out screening, FAAN replies Senate
Meanwhile, the Federal Airport Authority of Nigeria has said adequate measures have been put in place to ensure proper screening of passengers arriving into the country.
FAAN stated that no passenger at the international wing of the Port Harcourt International Airport would be allowed to leave without going through the necessary medical checks.
Head, Corporate Affairs of FAAN, Port Harcourt International Airport, Mr Alfred Itua, disclosed in response to the claim by the Senate that proper screening were not carried out at the country’s international airports.
Itua said, ‘’All I have to say is that at the international wing of the Port Harcourt International Airport, we have thermo scanner, which is use to scan the temperature of arriving passengers.
‘’For staff and travellers using the airport, there are sanitisers for washing of hands. There are hand gloves and masks for medical staff who are working there.”