By Adeniyi  Adedeji, Ilorin
As arguments for and against the use of the ‘Madargascar’ herbal remedy for COVID-19 continues, a medical virologist at the University of Ilorin, in Ilorin the Kwara State capital, Professor Matthew Kolawole has charged the Federal Government to look  inward for the possible cure for the pandemic in Nigeria.
The don, who is the Director, Institute of Molecular Sciences and Biotechnology of the University of Ilorin, said, “Nigeria needs to look inward and take responsibility in dealing with COVID-19 due to its high level of transmissibility.”
Professor Kolawole made the call while featuring on a Channels Television interview programme on the topic; ‘COVID-19: Quest for Local Solution’.
The renowned Professor, who was recently appointed into the Ministerial Advisory Committee on COVID-19, said the virus has always been there, pointing out that research has reported a strain of the virus in Nigeria since 2017.
Prof. Kolawole said, “It is not new to us; this virus has been with us. It is just that we have this novel strain of Coronavirus which is in circulation globally all over the world.
“We have reported Coronavirus OC’23 strain in Nigeria. The research was conducted in a group.”
Disclosing that the Coronavirus transmission modes, from the study/investigation carried out in 2017, overcrowding has been found to be responsible for the spread of the disease, the virologist stated that the National Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, regulations and World Health Organisation, WHO  guidelines has therefore requested for the need to keep social distance.
He added, “We need to look at the transmission modes of the virus, particularly the one that has to do with the fact that we need to prevent overcrowding; part of the study/investigation, which we did in 2017 makes the risk factor established.
“Overcrowding has been adduced to the spread of Coronavirus,; there is therefore the need for Nigerians to adhere strictly to all precautions advanced to prevent the spread of the virus.
“We need to be careful, we need to follow all the indoor precautions, particularly the ones that have to do with the spread of the virus.”
He lamented that Nigerians are taking the virus as unreal, stressing that “the COVID-19 strain that we have is a severe strain, so there is need for us to be very very careful. Nigerians must take this issue seriously, I heard people saying it is not true”, he pleaded.


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