Covid-19: ‘Allowing the Chinese to distract us at this time is counterproductive’ – Labour Congress reacts Chinese doctors in Nigeria

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The United Labour Congress of Nigeria (ULC) has reacted to the Federal Government’s decision to allow construction giant, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, CCECC, to bring in 15 Chinese doctors to assist the country in the battle against the novel coronavirus.

According to ULC President Joe Ajaero, the Federal Government should have made such a decision after consulting with the National Association of Resident Doctors, NARD and the Nigeria Medical Association. Ajaero also said the Coronavirus situation of the country could get worse if the government refuses to carry along the NMA and NARD

ULC, in a statement said: “Why would such a crucial decision be taken in secret without coordinate input from critical stakeholders in the nation? This sector is a highly specialised area which requires that at all times the input of the professionals in this sector should be sought. “We are also worried that a company which has had a pervasive influence on the government of this nation, being in charge of various critical infrastructural projects in this country, is the one making this offer at this time.

‘’Could it be that this may be our government’s way of granting favour to the company to take charge of their Chinese personnel during this pandemic? Was there a quid pro quo that may compromise our nation’s ethos, interests and medical processes?
‘’Congress is forced to speak up on this matter on hearing the reaction of the SGF, Boss Mustapha, on the complaints and concerns raised by many Nigerians on the attempt to bring in the Chinese without proper consultation.

’We view that response as unproductive, if not entirely dismissive of the well-founded objections raised by these concerned organisations and individuals. “It is always better to err on the side of caution than suffer adverse consequences eventually. Prevention is better than cure, they say. The Federal Government should address the fears of Nigerians who have rejected the idea of the Chinese experts, instead of the apparent imperious declaration that there is no going back on that decision as if the opinions of Nigerians do not matter.

‘’We believe that for the nation to have a successful battle against the pandemic, we must carry our indigenous stakeholders along and have everybody working together without the schisms that have become apparent.

“Allowing the Chinese to distract us at this time is counterproductive and we think the government should reconsider its stance for now, pending when it has fully consulted all the relevant stakeholders in the battle against the disease.”