As Nigeria moves towards enforcing the use of face masks in public to curb the spread of COVID-19, the National Union of Textile Garment and Tailoring Workers (NUTGTWN) has tasked the federal and state governments to look inward in the production of the protective materials.
President of the union, John Adaji, said government should look inwards in the procurement of protective materials that Nigeria had the capacity to produce locally.
“It is against this background that we commend the Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, Cross River State governor, Prof. Ben Ayade, and Delta State governor, Senator Ifeanyi Okowa, for supporting the local production of cloth face masks. “We call on the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and other state governments to also buy made-in-Nigeria cloth face masks, hand sanitizers and other protective equipment, in line with the Federal Government’s executive order for patronage of locally produced goods,” he said.
The textile president opined that Nigerian textile and garment industries, with thousands of our members in the informal sector, have the capacity to produce quality cloth face masks for the entire citizenry and even for export, thereby saving the country huge foreign exchange in importation: “The advantage of locally produced cloth face masks is that it can be washed and reused. Cloth face masks can help prevent people who have the virus but may not be showing any symptoms from spreading it by containing the respiratory droplets that we all expel when we talk, cough, or sneeze.”