Lagos — NIGERIA’s biggest container terminal operator, APM Terminals, has chartered a flight to deliver vital health supplies acquired under the auspices of the United Nations to support the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria.
The Managing Director of the firm in Nigeria, Alhaji Mohammed Ahmed, who confirmed this development last weekend, said the chartered flight delivered the essential items to Nigeria on Thursday April 16, 2020.
“It is very important to keep the flow of especially food supplies, medicine and PPE running to best navigate through the Coronavirus (COVID-19) breakout and its consequences. We see that clearly all over the world, not least in the countries which already are exposed.
“We are therefore happy to support UNICEF in flying vital equipment to families in Nigeria,” Ahmed said.
Ahmed said the gesture was in addition to the contribution of USD200,000 (over N75 million) to the United Nations in Nigeria Basket Fund to boost the efforts of the Federal Government in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic; and the contribution of another N200million directly into the Federal Government’s COVID-19 Relief Fund Account at the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
He also said that the company spent N25 million on creating community awareness through the media as well as fliers to sensitize Nigerians about the pandemic.
The chartered flight, which landed at the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, Lagos brought in various health items made up of 10,000 test kits, 15 oxygen concentrators, and various personal protective equipment (PPE), vaccines, IEHK/PEP kits, and other vital health supplies acquired by the UN.
The supplies will support the Federal Government, through the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), to prevent and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic in affected states across the country.
“We are happy to lend a helping hand at this critical time. COVID-19 is no respecter of persons, boundaries or territories. All hands must therefore be on deck to curtail its spread across the world.
“Our various contributions, which collectively amounts to more than N400 million so far, show our high esteem for the country and for our people. We believe that when we work together, we will overcome this pandemic soon,” Ahmed said.
He also emphasized the importance of strict adherence to the various safety measures issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in curtailing the virus.
Ahmed further requested importers to take delivery of their containers lest the terminal become congested.
APM Terminals in both Apapa and Onne has continued to provide uninterrupted services during the lock down. Measures such as providing hotel accommodation around Apapa for personnel have ensured smooth operations.