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Military opens two COVID-19 labs in Abuja, Lagos


The Defence Headquarters, Abuja, has opened two military laboratories in the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, and Lagos State to facilitate coronavirus tests.
The DHQ Defence Media Operations, on Friday, identified the laboratories as the Defence Reference Laboratory, Abuja; and the Nigerian Air Force Reference Laboratory in Lagos.
The Defence Media Operations Coordinator, Maj Gen John Enenche, who stated this at a press conference in Abuja, added that the military would apply the “minimum necessary force” to enforce the lockdown in Abuja, Lagos and Ogun states.

Enenche added, “In line with the effort of the Nigerian military along with other ministries, departments and agencies of the Federal Government to tackle the COVID-19 pandemic, the six geopolitical zones have been covered by our 21 designated isolation centres.
“Further to this, the 80 trained medical personnel are already deployed in our formations for engagement. In addition, personal protective equipment has been provided. The highpoint of our preparation is the provision of two military laboratories to carry out tests for coronavirus. These are the Defence Reference Laboratory in Abuja and the NAF Reference Laboratory in Lagos.
“Hence, the high command of the armed forces of Nigeria hereby encourages the public to strive to abide by the guidelines provided by the government on preventive measures against contracting the coronavirus; key among which is the instruction on lockdown given by the federal and various state governments. This will ensure that appropriate actions are taken by the relevant agencies to identify and manage cases promptly in order to prevent community transmission.”

Enenche added that there could be increased military presence to enforce the lockdown, saying the military would, however, use minimal force.
“The Armed Forces of Nigeria are to provide the minimum necessary force to support the Nigeria Police Force and other security agencies to checkmate the nefarious activities of criminals wanting to take advantage of patriotic and loyal citizens, who are observing the lockdown directive. Consequently, all criminally-minded individuals are hereby warned to desist from disturbing the peace of other citizens of the country. Otherwise, they will be tackled appropriately in line with the principles of Internal Security Operations and Rules of Engagement, in order to ensure the security of lives and property of peace-loving Nigerians,” the coordinator said.