Monkeypox: Virus Not Generated In Nigerian Labs – NCDC

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has denied allegations making the rounds in some quarters across the globe that US laboratories in Nigeria are generating the monkeypox virus, stressing there is no truth in the allegation. 

This is a sequel to a report by Sputnik, that the Russian Parliamentary Commission is investigating the work of US biological laboratories in Ukraine and to discuss information from the Russian Defense Ministry regarding alleged US laboratories in Nigeria, the country from where the current monkeypox outbreak originated, Konstantin Kosachev, one of the commission’s co-chairs, said. 

Igor Kirillov, the head of the radiation, chemical and biological defence of the Russian armed forces said on Friday that there are at least four US biological laboratories in Nigeria.

“The commission intends to discuss the defence ministry’s information about the possible involvement of US bio laboratories in the emergence of monkeypox,” Kosachev said. 

However, the NCDC said that the statement was not backed by any evidence. 

“The designation and activities of Nigerian public health laboratories are known to the supervising authorities, most of the laboratories having been procured and set up by the Federal Government in all 36 states and FCT for diagnostic purposes, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic and other infectious diseases. 

“Some other laboratories are dedicated to the very successful HIV control programme managed by the Federal Government and her partners, based on larger and longstanding bilateral and multilateral cooperation in public health, including prevention, diagnosis, surveillance and control of diseases.

“As a rule, Nigeria welcomes scientific cooperation with all foreign countries and has received material support from the United Kingdom, Germany, Japan etc., and also discussed vaccine production with Russia. 

“Collaboration between Nigeria and the United States has provided opportunities for technical assistance, capacity-building, provision of equipment and field hospitals at the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic and funds to support health programmes like HIV/AIDS and malaria elimination,” the NCDC said. 

Racheal Abujah
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