Molly Kilete, Abuja
The Defence Headquarters on Monday said it had established 48 Disaster Response Units in the Armed Forces to work in conjunction with the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA), to curb the novel coronavirus in the country.
The 48 disaster units which is on standby according to the coordinator, Defence Operation Media Centre, Major General John Enenche, would handle operations other than medicals that may arise in the course of the non-kinetic military operation.
Enenche further announced that the armed forces has made available some of its hospitals in the six geopolitical zones of the country to be used as isolation and treatment centres.
At a media briefing held in Abuja, Gen Enenche, said already some military medical personnel have been earmarked to be trained on the management of COVID-19 cases, which will be done in liaison with Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
He further stated that already the committee set up by the DHQ, headed by Major-General Irabor, to interface with ministries, departments and agencies of government in managing the Covid-19 scourge had started work.
Giving an update on military preparedness on the COVID-19, pandemic, Enenche said: “You may recall that on 27 March 2020, I briefed you on the highlights of the level of preparedness of the Nigerian Military in support of the Federal Government of Nigeria towards tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. In this regard, I am to give you more details on the preparedness of the Armed Forces of Nigeria, which are as follows:
“A Committee headed by the Chief of Defence Training and Operations is in place interfacing with all relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies of the Federal Government of Nigeria managing the COVID 19 pandemic.
“As mentioned in my first briefing regarding COVID-19, there are 17 isolation and treatment centres earmarked which are spread across the 6 geopolitical zones of the country as follows:
(1) South West.
(a) 68 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital, Yaba.
(b) 2 Division Hospital, Ibadan.
(2) South South.
(a) Military Hospital, Port Harcourt.
(b) Navy Reference Hospital, Calabar
(c) Military Hospital, Benin.
(3) South East.
(a) 211 Regiment Group Medical Centre, Owerri.
(b) 82 Division Military Hospital, Enugu.
(4) North Central.
(a) 161 Nigerian Air Force Hospital, Makurdi.
(b) 22 Brigade Medical Centre, Ilorin.
(5) North West.
(a) 44 Nigerian Army Reference Hospital, Kaduna.
(b) 465 Nigerian Air Force Hospital, Kano.
(c) 263 Nigerian Air Force Reference Hospital, Daura.
(d) 119 Composite Group Medical Centre, Sokoto.
(6) North East.
(a) 261 Nigerian Air Force Reference Hospital, Bauchi.
(b) 163 Nigerian Air Force Hospital, Yola.
(c) 7 Division Military Hospital, Maiduguri.
(d) 27 Task Force Brigade Field Ambulance, Damaturu.
“Further to this, a good number of Armed Forces of Nigerian medical personnel have been earmarked to be trained on the management of COVID-19 cases, which will be done in liaison with Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
“In the same vein, about 48 Disaster Response Units of the Armed Forces of Nigeria are on notice to move in conjunction with NEMA. These units will handle operations other than medicals that may arise in the course of this non kinetic military operation.”