Press Release

COVID-19: The Federal Ministry of Health and the Nigeria Medical Association - An Urgent Call for Collaborative Action!

11 April, 2020.

Press Release 02

Lagos, Nigeria.

COVID-19: The Federal Ministry of Health and the Nigerian Medical Association - An Urgent Call for Collaborative Action!

The Anap Foundation COVID-19 Think Tank* takes this opportunity to appreciate the selfless dedication of our front-line health workers in tackling various public health challenges in the past and presently, despite challenging working conditions. We also commend the Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) for its April 10 2020 circular cautioning state governors against relaxing guidelines on mass gatherings during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Nigeria has an adverse doctor to population ratio (4:10,000) compared to South Africa (9:10,000) and has suffered the depletion of healthcare workers and degradation of the country’s healthcare capabilities over decades. Nigeria is now faced with a pandemic of unprecedented proportions that has devastated people and economies across the globe. It is for these reasons and more, that the April 5 and April 9, 2020 statements from the NMA are worrying. The Anap COVID-19 Team concludes that the opposing positions of the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH) and the NMA on the involvement of foreign physicians and healthcare workers (whatever may be the pros and cons of the current Chinese intervention) to combat COVID-19 are not in the interest of the Nigerian public. We expect close monitoring of all foreign personnel while in the country for the safety of the foreign team and above all, Nigeria’s own sovereignty.

The Anap COVID-19 Team calls on the Federal Government and the FMOH to engage with the NMA immediately on the serious concerns and recommendations made by the NMA in its statements. We urge the NMA to review its positions and remain open and strategic about managing all offers to support Nigeria’s medical capacity to beat the deadly COVID-19.

The Anap COVID-19 Team, which has issued a 7-page Call to Action in English, Hausa, Igbo and Yoruba, urges the FMOH to be more collaborative and communicative with the NMA as it executes its strategies to contain the spread of the virus. Nigeria’s success is dependent on the engagement and alignment of all relevant healthcare industry stakeholders on the urgency at hand. The FMOH and the NMA are indispensable to driving and executing healthcare strategy in Nigeria. Strategic alignment of purpose, transparent communication, close collaboration and collective accountability are essential to the successful delivery in times of stability, and even more so in times of crisis such as now. We need the FMOH and the NMA to collaborate at this critical time otherwise the Nigerian people will be victims of this failure of leadership within the healthcare sector. 



Abubakar Siddique Mohammed




Atedo N. A. Peterside CON     



*The Anap Foundation COVID-19 Think Tank was established on 22 March, 2020, to respond to the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (“COVID-19”) pandemic and has 18 members drawn from across the six geopolitical zones and the diaspora (Germany & USA). 

For more information on the Anap Foundation COVID-19 Think Tank, please visit

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