Plateau State is seeking for cure through local efforts for the coronavirus pandemic. This week in Jos, Governor Simon Bako Lalong has inaugurated a special 13-member academic research committee on COVID-19 and other infectious diseases.

The committee with members largely drawn from the tertiary institutions in the state is charged with providing workable solutions that will address the COVID-19 pandemic.

No part of the world including Plateau State has had to contend with a pandemic of this nature in recent history and every stakeholder has a responsibility to save the world, said Lalong while inaugurating the committee.

His words: “Indeed, our generation is facing perhaps one of its most difficult times. Clearly, COVID-19 has reminded us of the need to be proactive in not only upgrading our medical facilities and improving manpower, but also working ahead to develop preventive and curative capacity for infectious diseases”.
He charged the members to work hard in utilizing the human and material resources available in Plateau State that are capable of giving solutions for the treatment of infectious diseases.

Governor Lalong and some members of the Academic Research Committee

Lalong added: “It is a known fact that Plateau State is endowed with herbal and medicinal products that could be harnessed towards building our capacity to withstand the threat of diseases such as the Corona Virus if, and when they spring up. Therefore, we must not only look inwards to find a solution to the current COVID-19 challenge, but also use today’s experience to prepare for the future in order to avoid panic and desperation.”

The Committee’s Terms of Reference include:
(a) To Search for conventional and/or alternative drugs for the treatment and cure of the Corona virus.
(b) Design treatment protocols for the treatment of the virus.
(c)Conduct clinical trials on the candidate drug (s).
(d) Design control mechanism for the spread of the virus.
(e) Any other design that will curtail the pandemic and subsequent diseases.
The Committee has one week to present a proposal to Government. Within three weeks, Government will be expecting a draft of research prospects, while fortnightly; a progress report should be submitted. 
the committee members are are follows:
1. Prof Noel N. Wannang- Pharmacology & Toxicology, Unijos –Lead Researcher
2. Prof Jacob A. Kolawole – Medicinal & Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Unijos
3. Dr Falang Kakjing – Pharmacology Dept. Unijos 
4. Prof James Damen – Medical Lab Science, Unijos
5. Dr Yusuf Agabi – Virology Unit, Dept of Microbiology, Unijos
6. Dr Richard J Kutshik – Dept. of Molecular Biology & Biochemistry, Unijos.
7. Dr Bukar Bukata – Pharmacology, Unijos
8. Dr Ajima Ukpe – Medicinal & Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Unijos 
9. Dr Ken Amagon – Pharmacology & Toxicology, Unijos
10. Dr Longdet I. Yohanna – Biochemistry, Unijos
11. Representative of the Plateau State Ministry of Health
12. Representative from the Infectious Unit of Medicine Department, JUTH.
13. Representative from Veterinary Research Institute, Vom.

Dr. Makut Simon Macham.


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