As efforts to contain the COVID-19 pandemic continues, the National Youth Service Corps is strategizing for safe and efficient conduct of its operations ahead of further lifting of restrictions on socio-economic activities in the country.
The Director-General, Brigadier General Shuaibu Ibrahim stated this during a courtesy visit to his counterpart of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, in Abuja.
He informed the NCDC Chief Executive that NYSC suspended the 2020 Batch ‘A’ Stream One Orientation Course just one week into the exercise as a proactive measure to avert the spread of COVID-19 to any of the Orientation Camps.
Ibrahim said other operations of the Scheme were scaled down in line with the Federal Government’s restrictions order, adding that the Passing-out of the 2019 Batch ‘B’ Stream One Corps members was low-keyed with full adherence to the COVID-19 prevention protocols.
He said conscious of the possibility of further or complete lifting of lockdown, the strategies mapped out by the NYSC Management had taken care of various scenarios, and would be presented to the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 through the NCDC for guidance.
The Director-General said the suspended 2020 Batch ‘A’ Stream One Orientation Course would be completed, when the Scheme received the green light from the PTF.
He also briefed his host on the various COVID-19 interventions made by NYSC, especially through Corps members’ activities all over the country, including sensitization; production and distribution of face masks, liquid soaps, hand sanitizers, automated disinfection chambers; as well as automated and foot-operated liquid soap, hand sanitizer and water dispenser.
Ibrahim solicited the PTF’s support in the funding of mass production of the automated disinfection chambers for use in all the NYSC Orientation Camps.
He commended the NCDC for its role in the overall national efforts at containing the COVID-19.
In his response, the NCDC Director-General, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, commended NYSC for its support to the fight against the coronavirus through Corps member’s activities. He particularly expressed delight at the fabrication of hand washing machines and production of disinfectants amongst other interventions.
Ihekweazu, who praised the contributions of the Scheme to the unity and development of the country, stressed that it deserved every form of support to enable it succeed.
He said the proposals presented by the Director-General would be studied and recommendations made to the appropriate authorities.