US Won’t Provide Experimental Ebola Drug, Zmapp, To Nigeria

The Minister of Health Prof. Onyebuchi
Chukwu in an audience with the US
Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr. James Entwistle,
during a visit in the minister’s office in Abuja
The American Ambassador to Nigeria,
James Entwistle, said on Monday, August
18, his country was not yet in a position to
make the Ebola Disease experimental drug,
Zmapp, available to Nigeria.
During a visit to the Nigerian Minister of
Health, Onyebuchi Chukwu, Mr. Entwistle said
that the drug was not yet available in
sufficient quantity to go round all the
countries requesting it.
According to NAN, the ambassador didn’t
say when the drug would be available for
Africa’s most populous country. He only
advised the Nigerian health ministry to focus
on isolation, screening and prevention.
Commenting the efforts of the Federal
Government in curbing the spread of the
Ebola virus in the country, Mr. Entwistle said
the aim of the visit was to discuss further on
the anti-Ebola cooperation between the US
government and the Nigerian government.
“Your government is doing a good job on
contact tracing; I noticed when I flew back
here on Thursday night into the country,
before I left the plane I filed in the
questionnaire.
“I was very impressed because I had to put
in my seat number which is a very good
idea, so that if you have to trace the guy
who was seating next to me you will know
where I am,” he said.
Speaking during the visit, the Minister of
Health, Onyebuchi Chukwu, said the Nigerian
Government was withholding its approval
for the Anti-Ebola drug Nano-Silver
produced by a Nigerian because it didn’t
meet the requirements of the National
Health Research Ethics Code.
However, the Nano Silver drug was made
available to the Emergency Operations
Centre in Lagos on August 14. According to
the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,
Nano-Silver is a pesticide.
He said the ambassador’s visit was an
opportunity to share ideas and information
on Ebola virus.

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