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Unilorin gets molecular lab for COVID-19, other infectious diseases’ testing

The University of Ilorin has again raised the bar in public health provision in the country, with the flag-off of its ultra-modern Molecular Diagnostic and Research Laboratory, which was sponsored by the Tertiary Education Trust Fund (TETFund).

A statement by the Director of Corporate Affairs, University of Ilorin, Kunle Akogun, disclosed that the laboratory, which was commissioned last weekend by TETFund’s Executive Secretary, Prof. Suleman Elias Bogoro, has already obtained the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control’s (NCDC) certification as a Public Health Laboratory for the diagnosis of COVID-19 and the surveillance of other infectious diseases like poliomyelitis, Lassa Fever and other viral haemorrhagic fevers.

While flagging off the facility, Prof. Bogoro said that the University of Ilorin has produced the most successful TETFund-sponsored researches in the country for several years, describing the institution’s College of Health Sciences as one of the best rated health training institutions in the country.

He added that the College of Health Sciences has some of the best medical personnel that consistently produce problem-solving researches.

The TETFund boss pointed out that quality of personnel, research infrastructure and relevance of research outcome to the society are the parameters that determine the strength of a university, saying that the University of Ilorin is number one when those parameters are considered.

Prof. Bogoro further disclosed that TETFund is working to curb brain drain by providing infrastructure and research facilities to discourage Nigerians from going abroad where those facilities are available.

He stressed that TETFund is putting research into perspective to ensure that research contributes to national development while advising tertiary institutions to seek complementary funding as TETFund is only an intervention agency.

The TETFund boss then pledged the agency’s continued support to the University to make the Molecular Centre a place of excellence where service and research could thrive.

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu is expected to launch the Climate Action Plan (CAP) on Tuesday as he flags off the 8th International Climate Change Summit in Lagos.

Briefing the media in Lagos on Sunday about plans for the summit which comes up between Tuesday, June 8 and Wednesday June 9, 2021, Commissioner for the Environment and Water Resources, Tunji Bello said the summit is being resuscitated by Mr Governor after a five-year lull.

Bello explained that the theme for the 2021 Conference is “Adapting Health, Energy, Agriculture, Transport and Waste Infrastructure to Long Term Impacts of Climate Change in Lagos State.”

He said the Climate Action Plan was developed to guide the state and stakeholders on the implementation of collective measures to address climate change impacts and causes through adaptation, mitigation and other measures.

He added that the Summit is a melting pot for researchers, investors, academicians and stakeholders in the environment and economic sector where notable actions for future economic and sustainable development of the state are taken.

According to the commissioner, the summit which will be hybrid because of Covid-19 safety prescriptions will take place at the Continental Hotel Lagos featuring experts in various fields both at home and abroad

He added that the Summit will consist of plenary and parallel breakout sessions focusing on developing road maps for implementing action in agriculture, energy, transport, health adaptation and water, access to finance, urban planning, waste management and circular economy.

Some of the topics expected to be covered include the imperative for action to protect human health from climate change threats and risks as well as delivery of clean and safe energy for domestic cooking as adaptation strategy for Lagos.

Others are understanding the links between Pillar 2 of the T.H.E.M.E.S Agenda and Lagos biosecurity strategy for a climate friendly post Covid-19 Lagos and building a 21st Century green sustainable ecosystem through scientific, technology and innovative approach.

The summit will also examine Infrastructure and Climate Change: A global perspective and a Sustainable and Resilient Transportation for adaptation to Climate Change in Lagos State.

Also to be touched, according to Tunji Bello, is Climate Change and Municipal Solid Waste Management: Perspective of Solid Waste handling in Coastal Communities/Slums as well as Sustainable Financing for Climate Change Action and Adaptation: Lagos State in Focus.

Bello also informed that some of the expected outcomes include creating a roadmap for implementing the Lagos State Climate Action Plan (CAP).

Others are development of strategies for a green economy and improving the flow of finance for Climate Action and attract investment in low carbon projects.

Bello said the summit is also expected to develop bankable climate action projects in Health & Environment, Energy, Agriculture, Transport and Waste Management for the state amongst others.

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