The Rector, Federal Polytechnic, Ado Ekiti, Dr. Hephzibah Oladebeye, has called on the Ekiti State government and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control(NCDC) to designate the institution as a testing and treatment centre for COVID-19 pandemic.
Oladebeye justified his demand by pointing out that the Polytechnic has procured a polymerate Chain Reaction (PCR) machine through grants provided for some lecturers that can rapidly test the COVID-19 status of individuals.
On the preparedness of the institution to reopen despite the COVID-19 challenges, the Rector said the citadel of learning has manufactured enough precautionary facilities that can guarantee safety on campus if the Federal government gives the go-ahead.
The Rector spoke in Ado Ekiti on Wednesday while showcasing the innovative contributions of the institution to the quick containment of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID-19 containment facilities manufactured by the institution include: Face masks, sanitizers, pedal-operated hand washing and sanitizing machines amongst others.
The Rector said the Polytechnic had also procured a Polymerate Chain Reaction (PCR) machine, which was purchased for the purpose of DNA and RNA analyses but was later discovered to be effective in testing COVID-19.
“During the lockdown, our researchers here didn’t rest. We used the lockdown period for innovation. We manufactured all these to help our nation. The PCR doesn’t have accessories, so we are pleading to the state government to help us so that the PCR machine can be put to use and the whole state can be safe.
“The PCR can test a large number of people in a day. Apart from this, we have a massive health centre we can easily convert into an isolation centre, if the government is ready to partner us”.
The Rector stated that the facilities provided would aid the quick reopening of the Polytechnic when the Federal government gives a directive for the reopening of schools.
He said the institution is appealing to members of the public, private organisations and governments for patronage so that all the facilities can be marketed to increase the commercial viability of the institution.
“We are ready to manufacture and sell to interested state governments, corporate organisations and individuals. Some of them can be put in public places for the safety of our citizens”.
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