There is little doubt that the Ogoni nation is in dire straits since the agitation against environmental degradation and the subsequent clampdown by the Nigerian state. The ensuing genocide precipitated crisis in Ogoniland. Though the crisis left a sordid memory on the psyche of the people of the Niger Delta and Ogoni in particular, the events emanating from it are evident everywhere in the region. For most socio-political observers and leaders of thought, the present underdevelopment, violence, anti-social behaviour and brigandage in Ogoniland is a cocktail of political manipulations, international energy conspiracy and other latent social vices underpinning the crisis that stunted development in Ogoniland.
Before the advent of imperialist adventure by the British, there is no credible history or record that Ogoni people were ever conquered or colonized by any other group. Our first major international protest was to the Henry Willinks Commission of Inquiry into Minority Rights in 1958 and, three decades after Nigeria’s political independence in 1960, Ogoniland had remained the most peaceful and industrialized area in Nigeria. Nigeria’s economy was within this period dependent on Ogoni Division for hosting the first ever gas-fired electricity turbine in Afam commissioned in 1962 while Ogoni and Afam remained in darkness till 2007, the first crude oil refinery plant in Alesa Eleme in 1965, the first fertilizer plant commissioned in Onne in 1981, the first petrochemical plant in Akpajo, the first natural deep sea port in Onne, and over 97 oil wells spread over nine major flow stations of Bomu (Dere), Bodo West, Korokoro, Yorla, Ebubu and four other oil fields operated by Shell and Chevron, both multinational corporations exploiting hydrocarbons in the Niger Delta.
The operations of these corporations created an atmosphere of environmental terrorism, anxiety and fear of an imminent extinction among the natives. The apparent concern of environmental degradation was later confirmed by the UNEP Report on Ogoniland of August 2011. These fears and concerns were lodged with the state authorities and were met with force, leading to the death and displacement of thousands of indigenous Ogonis and a mass exodus. The rest, as you know is now the beginning of what pundits will refer to as failure of leadership in Ogoniland, a culture of divide-and-rule, skullduggery, decimation of Ogoni cultural values, manipulation, brigandage and the impending decadence and violence.
This unfortunate situation in Ogoni is now a subject of critical sociological analyses, academic debates and comments by strategic stakeholders on the possible way forward. This article is an attempt to contribute to that discourse giving an eye witness account of most of the events that took place in the last four decades.
Nigeria is in a deep moral dilemma from north to south and east to west. No zone or region is exempted. Ogoni, as an integral part of the South South zone, shares the same moral and ethical burden as the rest of the country. With decaying family values, lack of respect for the rule of law, no embedded national civic ethic, the debate on the future of our teeming youths in Nigeria and Ogoni in particular should engage the mind of all responsible Nigerians. Interestingly, most deontologists agree that the family, being the basic social institution, has the moral authority to mould the youth from infancy with virtue and love for one another. From the family, the government must lay an institutional framework for an ordered society based on equity, justice and freedom where security of lives and property will be guaranteed. Without good government, anarchy, fear and intimidation will continue to constrain our capacity to freely relate to one another and confront the challenges of developing Ogoniland.
When debates about our stunted development in Ogoniland is placed on a single variable like the government or family, we should realize that both the former and the latter operate within a geographical space and time. It is arguable that even the worst forms of government and governance, the interrelationship, interdependency and networking between individuals, families and society is inevitable to human survival and economic growth. Socialization of our society, basic education, virtue and moral upbringing may impact significantly on the level of development in any civilized society. As we continue to look upon leadership in terms of political office holders, we forget that politics is the mirror of the society.
Political office holders are recruited from family members within the society. A morally deficient society will throw up deficient political leaders and ineffective government. Politicians in Ogoni, as in some other parts of Nigeria, are like comedians who want to soothe the audience through temporal comical relief while the main problem remains unsolved. This is because most Ogoni people don’t care about making sacrifices today for a better future. We prefer the intimidation of our neighbours to boost our ego; living a lavish and fake lifestyle of ostentation, pride, greed and avarice.
I was born in 1961, the year following our independence in oil-rich Dere community in present day Gokana local government, the heartland of Ogoni nation. As a young boy, I witnessed the bombing and destruction of the Bomu (Dere) flow station operated by then Shell BP. I also witnessed the horror of the Nigerian Civil War as my grand parents were terrified and hounded into exile as refugees. Our return home in 1970 was facilitated by the International Red Cross. It was during this period that the General Yakubu Gowon’s policy of Reconciliation, Rehabilitation and Reconstruction (RRR) was implemented. Sadly, some of our leaders at various levels of the society conspired with the policy makers and the bureaucrats to subvert the process and the program failed to achieve the desired result.
The failure of the RRR policy was blamed on the military government, with the insinuation that a civil democratic government will solve all our problems and cure all the societal ills. For me, democracy is a process and not an event. It cures no problem of development. I heard my father complaining to a friend about his frustration to get some of our traditional rulers and leaders of thought to allow the huge compensation paid by Shell BP to be used to provide potable water and educational facilities for the Dere community but they preferred the tons of cash to be shared among some privileged membes of the community. I also witnessed, by the grace of God, most of these chiefs and leaders of thought languish in penury a few years later. This is the stack reality of our predicament to develop or make progress as a people.
Ogoni is in crisis, from the family to the larger society and leadership in all our social and political institutions. The truth, as you know, is often the first casualty in times of war, conflict or other internecine altercations. Those who try to uphold it are often branded as enemies of the people by a few vocal and powerful elites working for their selfish interests. The formation of the Movement for the Survival of Ogoni People (MOSOP) in 1988 was to address the apparent lack of focus and commitment by most of our community leaders to see the development of Ogoni in general as a major sacrifice without any option. The first shocker of my life as an elected councillor and vice chairman of the defunct Bori Local Government Council was the wrangling among elites in Ogoni when late Ken Saro-Wiwa was elected to lead our cultural assembly tagged Ogoni Central Union. The angst generated by the emergence of Saro-Wiwa against some of the Ogoni elites forced the change of the nomenclature of the organization to MOSOP, with Dr Garrick Leton as the consensus pioneer president and Saro-Wiwa as the spokesperson.
The anxiety generated by the emergence of leaders of the Ogoni Central Union and MOSOP even strengthened the enemies of the Ogoni people and frustrated our resolve to confront the challenges of development and progress in our homeland. This schism among the Ogoni elites further divided the Ogoni people and no one seems to think of Ogoni as a community of people, but will rather use any opportunity provided by the Ogoni platform for self aggrandizement and personal enrichment.
For Ogoniland to develop, all hands must be on deck. Progress and success must not be viewed from an individual level but should be seen as a collective effort, particularly those elected or appointed and vested with social capital to hold such office or position in trust for the Ogoni people. The people themselves must not encourage those in such position of public trust to accumulate wealth as some of our grand parents did during the 1970 oil blowout largesse that left their offsprings in abject poverty to this day. We must ensure that our children imbibe the right values and educate them beyond the formal classroom level. Our kids must be taught basic problem-solving skills of innovation, entrepreneurship, discipline, diligence and patience. We must inculcate realistic views of livelihood with a clear understanding that the major source of frustration comes from expectation.
As a people, can’t we hold our community leaders and politicians accountable for the mismanagement of the huge oil spill payout in the seventies and other forms of government intervention that were placed under our care? Are we merely complaining and seeking for attention or relevance and acquiesce when we directly benefit from malfeasance? The hubris, greed and prejudice afflicting our people must be checked, our orientation towards life and one another must change; and our concept towards development as gift from outside must also change.
Development, economic and social progress is a deliberate and conscious human activity. It must be well planned and properly executed and sustained. We must realize that wealth is typically the result of savings and inheritance and can’t be acquired or built overnight. We must also see human capital and wealth as a result of sound education, skill and talent. Trust which is essentially a social capital is lacking within our people, and can only be built through unity, strength, sincerity and quality of relationship among the elites in Ogoniland.
Our problem and solution is within us as individuals or groups congregating as a society. Indigenous contractors and service vendors must take responsibility and account for the unexecuted, abandoned and substandard contracts for the provision of some social amenities and critical infrastructure lacking in Ogoniland. Irate and restive youths demanding ransom or tribute before granting access to project sites must stop. Community leaders should be encouraged to demonise, stigmatise and shame any errant, deviant or anti-social behaviour that is not in sync with Ogoni values, culture and virtue. Community leaders must be courageous to question sources of overnight riches by disapproval or acceptance in the communities.
Hon. Mikko wrote in from PH.
Mental Illness: A Taboo?
Illnesses is a broad term used to define the poor state of mind or body. It-is the state of feeling or being unwell, which can be due to an underlying factor. Illnesses vary depending on what part of the body it affects or the underlying factors, it is not always due to a disease. For example, a person suffering from emotional turmoil due to stress may have an illness, but that doesn’t mean they are suffering from a disease.
Mental health is significant for emotions, thinking, communication, resilience, and self-esteem. It is also the key to relationships, personal and emotional well-being and contributing to community and society. Whilst mental illness are health conditions involving changes in emotion, thinking or behaviour a combination of all these, which affect your ability to get through dayto-day life. The American Psychiatric Association (APA) redefined mental disorders in the DSM- 5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental disorder) as “a syndrome characterized by clinically significant disturbance in an individual’s cognition, emotion regulation, or behavior reflects a dysfunction in the psychological, biological, or developmental processes underlying mental functioning. The term mental translates to “the mind”.
One in four Nigerians – some 50 million people – are suffering from some sort of mental illness, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). The seventh-largest country in the world, Nigeria, has Africa’s highest rate of depression, and ranks fifth in the world in the frequency of suicide, according to WHO. There are also less than 150 psychiatrists in this country of 200 million, and WHO estimates that fewer than 10 percent of mentally ill Nigerians have ·access to the care they need.
Many Nigerians have misconceptions and misbeliefs about mental illness, hence stigmatize people with mental illness. A mental health condition isn’t the result of one event. Research suggests multiple overlapping causes; genetics, environment and lifestyle influence whether someone develops a mental health condition. A stressful job or home life makes some people more susceptible, as do traumatic life events like being the victim of a crime or abuse. Biochemical processes and circuits and basic brain structure may play a role, too. Some common ones include:
*Anxiety disorders, including panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and phobias
*Depression, bipolar disorder, and other mood disorders
*Post-traumatic stress disorder
*Psychotic disorders, including schizophrenia.
You might experience or notice some of these signs & symptoms. If several of the following are occurring, it may be useful to follow up with a mental health professional.
*Sleep or appetite changes- Dramatic sleep and appetite changes or decline in personal care
*Mood changes – Rapid or dramatic shifts in emotions or depressed feelings
*Withdrawal – Recent social withdrawal and loss of interest in activities previously enjoyed
*Drop in functioning – An unusual drop in functioning, at school, work or social activities, such as quitting sports, failing in school or difficulty performing familiar tasks
*Problems thinking – Problems with concentration, memory or logical thought and speech that are hard to explain
*Increased sensitivity – Heightened sensitivity to sights, sounds, smells or touch; avoidance of over-stimulating situations
*Apathy – Loss of initiative or desire to participate in any activity
*Feeling disconnected – A vague feeling of being disconnected from oneself or one’s surroundings; a sense of unreality
*Illogical thinking – Unusual or exaggerated beliefs about personal powers to understand meanings or influence events; illogical or “magical” thinking typical of childhood in an adult
*Nervousness – Fear or suspiciousness of others or a strong nervous feeling
*Unusual behaviour – Odd, uncharacteristic, peculiar behaviour
One or two of these symptoms alone can’t predict a mental illness but may indicate a need for further evaluation. If a person is experiencing several at one time and the symptoms are causing serious problems in the ability to study, work or relate to others, he/she should be seen by a physician or mental health professional. People with suicidal thoughts or intent, or thoughts of harming others, need immediate attention.
Mental disorders can be diagnosed. The steps to getting a diagnosis include
*A medical history
*A physical exam and possibly lab tests, if your provider thinks that other medical conditions could be causing your symptoms
*A psychological evaluation. You will answer questions about your thinking, feelings, and behaviour.
Most families are not prepared to cope with learning when their loved one has a mental illness. It can be physically and emotionally trying, and can make us feel vulnerable to the opinions and judgments of others. However, they need your love and support.
There are also other methods that are helpful. Choosing the right treatment plan should be based on a person’s individual needs and medical situation, and under a mental health professional’s care. Therapy can be beneficial for both the individual with mental illness and other family members. A mental health professional can suggest ways to cope and better understand your loved one’s illness.
When looking for a therapist, be patient and talk to a few professionals so you can choose the person that is right for you and your family. It may take time until you are comfortable, but in the long run you will be glad you sought help.
Stop the stigma. Stigma can lead to discrimination. Discrimination may be obvious and direct, such as someone making a negative remark about your mental illness or your treatment. Or it may be unintentional or subtle, such as someone avoiding you because the person assumes you could be unstable, violent or dangerous due to your mental illness. You may even judge yourself.
Some of the harmful effects of stigma can include:
* Reluctance to seek help or treatment
*Lack of understanding by family, friends, co-workers or others
*Fewer opportunities for work, school or social activities or trouble finding housing
*Bullying, physical violence or harassment
*The belief that you’ll never succeed at certain challenges or that you can’t improve your situation.
Here are some ways you call deal with stigma:
* Get treatment
*Don’t let stigma create self-doubt and shame
*Don’t equate yourself with your illness
*Don’t isolate yourself
*Join a support group that helps educate people and end the stigma.
Others’ judgments almost always stem from a lack of understanding rather than information based on facts. Learning to accept your condition and recognize what you need to do to treat it, seeking support, and helping educate others can make a big difference.
Dr Daniel, a pharmacist, is also a volunteer with Mentally Aware Nigeria Initiative.
COVID-19 Pandemic: A Fact Sheet
An alarm blared from the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) secretariat on 30th January, 2020, officially announcing a Public Health Emergency of International Concern (PHEIC). All of human race is under siege by a completely new strain of the Coronaviruses starting from the city of Wuhan, China’s economic hub in the province of Hubei and spreading to well over 200 countries and territories with an alarming figure of over 2.26 million infected persons and nearly 154,388 deaths globally.
In a joint agreement on the 11th of February 2020, based on international guidelines, World Health Organisation (WHO), the World Organisation for Animal Health and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), identified this novel virus as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus-2 (SARS-CoV-2) and its disease condition Coronavirus Disease-2019 (COVID-19) and on the 28th February 2020, WHO raised the global risk assessment of the infection of this deadly virus to “very high” hence a response plan was launched to prevent, contain, manage and control its spread vis a vis more deaths.
There exist presently a lot of unanswered questions in the bid to understand fully the epidemiology of COVID-19 so as to draw definitive conclusions about its full clinical features, mode of infection, the intensity of the human-to-human transmission and the original source of the outbreak as well as its management and control though research has been both vigorous extensive and continuous.
According to the joint mission of the World Health Organisation, the World Organisation for Animal Health and the Food and Agriculture Organisation (FAO), there are facts on COVID-19 which include:
It is a newly identified pathogen with no known pre-existing immunity in humans.
Everyone is assumed to be susceptible although there may be risk factors increasing susceptibility to infection. However, individuals at highest risk for severe disease and death include people aged over 60 years and those with underlying conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, chronic respiratory disease and cancer.
Disease in children appears to be relatively mild but can still be fatal hence caution is strongly advised.
Presently, it is not known whether there is a neutralizing immunity after infection, studies on this are still ongoing.
Symptoms are non-specific and the disease presentation can range from no symptoms (a symptomatic) to severe pneumonia and death though most individuals who present no symptom at early stage of infection tend to become sick later.
Transmission is through droplets and fomites from an infected person to an uninfected person during closure unprotected contact.
Presently, there is no laboratory evidence that COVID-19 is airborne hence it cannot be transmitted through air, however caution should be applied especially by health care workers when carrying out some procedures that involve the generation of aerosols in health facilities.
Presently, no evidence exists on its transmission from human fecal materials or excreta however; strict toilet hygiene is strongly advised.
Generally, signs and symptoms for COVID-19 include: mild respiratory symptoms and fever, (for mild cases) on an average of 5-6 days after infection, however a range of 1-14 days has strongly been established to be the maximum incubation period while in severe cases, infected persons present with fever, dry cough, fatigue, sputum production, shortness of breath, sore throat, headache, myalgia or arthralgia, chills, nausea and/or vomiting, nasal congestion, diarrhea and hemoptysis, conjunctival congestion, respiratory failure, septic shock, and/or multiple organ dysfunction/failure and even death.
Most people (80%) infected with COVID-19 virus have mild disease and recover.
Presently, there is a strong evidence that non-pharmaceutical interventions can reduce and even interrupt transmission.
In order to reduce exposure to and transmission of COVID-19 illnesses, the general public is, therefore, advised based on WHO’s standard recommendations to practice hand and respiratory hygiene, and safe food practices which include:
When coughing and sneezing, cover mouth and nose with flexed elbow or tissue; throw tissue away immediately and wash hands.
Avoid close contact with anyone who has fever and cough.
If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing seek medical care early and share previous travel history with your health care provider.
When visiting live markets in areas currently experiencing cases of novel Coronavirus, avoid direct unprotected contact with live animals and surfaces in contact with animals.
The consumption of raw or undercooked animal products should be avoided. Raw meat, milk or animal organs should be handled with care, to avoid cross-contamination with uncooked foods, as per good food safety practices.
It is also very important that the general public should:
Recognise that COVID-19 is a new and concerning disease, but that outbreaks can be managed with the right response and that the vast majority of infected people will recover.
Be calm and avoid unnecessary panic and mongering unfounded rumours and fake news.
Begin now to adopt and rigorously practice the most important preventive measures for COVID-19 by frequent hand washing and always covering your mouth and nose when sneezing or coughing.
Continually get updated on COVID-19 and its signs and symptom (i.e. fever and dry cough).
Know that the strategies and response activities will constantly improve as new information on this disease is accumulating every day; and. Be prepared to actively support a response to COVID-19 in a variety of ways, inclduing the adoption of more stringent ‘social distancing’ practices and helping the high-risk elderly population.
The United Nations Organisation has made laudable efforts in its response to the outbreak of this unseen enemy in the areas of public awareness, sensitization, deployment of medical materials and personnel as well as logistics yet there still exist a knowledge gap on what understanding the virus there is and what ought to be at present. Whether this war on COVID-19 will be won will depend largely on a number of factors particularly in Africa and specifically in Nigeria and such factors will include;
Public perception on the existence and real danger posed by COVID-19.
The extent of aggressiveness of public awareness and sensitisation campaign.
The modalities put in place to monitor the extent of public adherence to measure rolled out for the fight against COVID-19 such as stay-at-home instructions, social distancing, self-isolation, simple sanitary measures (washing of hands with soap and water and the use of alcohol based hand rub), personal respiratory hygiene lock down of public places etc.
The availability of equipped isolation and management centers.
The availability of medical personnel as well as volunteers to manage identified cases.
Provision of palliatives to the public to ameliorate hunger while observing the stay-at-home instruction.
Sanitary measures such as fumigation and sanitisation of public places.
While we fight and hope to win this war, it is my sincere advice that we all remain resolute to stay safe by adhering strictly to WHO’s safety measures.
Dr Amadi wrote from Port Harcourt.
COVID-19: Whither Rivers Public Health Lab?
No doubt, this verse of the Holy Bible is apt and dearly explains the challenges associated with the emergence of Coronavirus also known as COVID-19 the world over.
Since the pandemic emerged from Wuhan, China in December 2019, it has brought the world to its knees with about 19,000 deaths and over 500,000 cases across the world.
Surprisingly, the pandemic has brought down to ground zero even the best of health care systems while Europe is reportedly the current epic centre and not China.
As a result, many nations have announced travel ban to foreigners while others have declared a total lock down, leading to a sudden global economic meltdown.
For instance, it has been reported that Coronavirus is killing one person in every 10 minutes in Iran, death toll in Italy has overtaken China while Argentina, Spain, Canada and the US State of California have all declared a lockdown. Africa has got its fair share of the emerging Coronavirus pandemic.
This is evidenced by the number of African countries that have recorded suspected cases and fatalities as the case may be.
Nigeria, Africa’s big brother has been adversely affected with about 50 confirmed cases, one death, while Governor of Bauchi State has been confirmed positive.
With the hind sight of Ebola epidemic in 2014, pundits expressed fear that the next state would be Rivers State.
This is because Rives State remains the hub of oil and gas industry in Nigeria with the presence of two sea ports in Port Harcourt and Onne, an International Airport at Omagwa supported by the Airforce Base as well as a train terminus in the heart of the city of Port Harcourt, is suggestive of influx of people into the state.
It was, therefore, no surprise indeed when it was speculated on the social media that COVID-19 has been reported in Rivers State.
The Rivers State Commissioner for Health, Professor Princewill Chike, on Saturday 14th March immediately addressed the media where he stated categorically that the suspected case of a 43 year old Imo State man was negative.
Professor Chike disclosed that the samples were taken to Lagos State University Teaching Hospital (LUTH) infectious disease centre.
In his words: “The nasal, oropharyngeal and sputum samples were collected for analysis and dispatched to the reference laboratory in LUTH.
He concluded thus: “The result from the test is available and is negative.
Interestingly, the Rivers State Government has constituted a 5-man Inter-Ministerial COVID-19 Awareness Campaign Committee headed by the Commissioner for Information and Communications, Pastor Paulinus Nsirim, for which several engagements have been held with critical stakeholders.
On the order of closure of schools and partial lockdown, an implementation committee has also been constituted.
Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike, in a broadcast on Friday 20th March, ordered the immediate closure of public and private schools.
In as much as awareness campaign and closure of schools are necessary, COVID-19 offers the nations of the world, including Nigeria and indeed Rivers State in particular, opportunities to review their health care delivery system.
This review requires scientific investigation into manufacturing of vaccines and drugs needed for prevention and cure.
It would be recalled that the founding fathers of the state established a public health laboratory after the civil war as an integral part of the State Ministry of Health.
They foresaw the strategic position of the state to the national economy and created such a sensitive laboratory for disease surveillance.
It was the Rivers State Public Health Laboratory that carried out surveillance for the outbreak of cholera in Emakalakala during Governor Melford Okilo’s administration as well as water quality management in parts of the state.
Unfortunately, the government of Dr. Peter Odili with Dr. Emi Membre-Otaji as Commissioner for Health gave the premises to NAFDAC and transferred the laboratory to the Central Medical Store with the promise of building a new one.
Worse still, the inception of the Wike-led administration was greeted with the outbreak of killer illicit gin (Ogogoro) for which the Rivers State House of Assembly invited the State Ministry of Health for an interface.
It was revealed that because the State Public Health Laboratory was in deplorable condition, samples of the killer Ogogoro were taken to NAFDAC for which result of analysis was delayed because NAFDAC itself had a job at hand.
Such sample analysis was required to protect and promote healthy living of the public because they are not carried out by conventional medical laboratories.
It was painful that the illicit Ogogoro samples were taken to NAFDAC not because of lack of laboratory scientists in the state but because of lack of basic equipment at the state public health laboratory.
It is on record that Rivers State, in the past, had competent laboratory scientists that served as Directors of the Public Health Laboratory.
It is worthy of note that late Professor Appolos Nna Bulol, late Jaja Festus Sunday, late Doctor Promise Karibo, Ikpoko Innocent, late Doctor Fiberesima Tonye, and Token Lawson-Jack among others worked there, including the present Director, Ngozi Igbo.
One thing is clear: the present Dean, Faculty of Medical Laboratory Science, Professor Confidence Wachukwu worked with the Public Health Laboratory of Ministry of Health before transferring to the Rivers State University (RSU).
The Rivers State Government must see beyond setting up interministerial committee on COVID-19 and closure of schools to reequipping the Rivers State Public Health Laboratory as part of effort to control emerging zonotic diseases such as Lassa fever, COVID-19, TB, toxoplasmosis and psittacosis, among others.
Better still, the Rivers State University now has a Teaching Hospital to handle tertiary medical services much more complex than primary health care centres and general hospitals.
Without mincing words, therefore, the Rivers State Government must interface with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) to purchase relevant calibrated laboratory equipment and embark on hands- on-training.
If Rivers State Ministry of Health sent samples to LUTH, the Rivers State University Teaching Hospital (RUTH) could be equipped to carry out similar test too.
Collaboration, obtaining approvals and training are all that is needed to diagnose and fight emerging diseases.
These equipment include but are not limited to Polymerase Chain – Reaction (PCR), High Performance Liquid Chromatography, Spectrophotometer and Compound Microscope particularly the brands designed for specific purposes.
For instance, Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) according to experts is required to identify causative organism to their specie level, Ribo Nucleic acid in virus as well as amplify specific gene and acid detection and sequencing.
As organisms continue to mutate, humans must be determined to control emerging diseases.
It is also pertinent to revive agriculture and veterinary laboratory that hitherto existed at the present day office of the PDP State Secretariat on Aba Road, Port Harcourt.
The time to act is now.
Sika is of Radio Rivers FM, Port Harcourt.
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