COVID-19: Britain commends Nigerian over ingenuity in mass ventilator production

The Cabinet Office of the United Kingdom (UK) has described a Nigerian Information Technology consultant, Victor Osagie as one of the best Britain has to offer due to his ingenuity in the mass production of ventilators to boost the National Health System, NHS fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

In a commendation letter from the UK cabinet office, which was jointly endorsed by all partners including Ford and Airbus, Victor Osagie was commended for his role in the just concluded ventilator challenge project which was an initiative of the cabinet office.

According to the letter which was addressed to Victor Osagie and sighted by the Nigerian Tribune, “Thank you for your invaluable contribution to our ventilator challenge UK team. As we battled together to save lives threatened by Covid-19, your energy, ingenuity and camaraderie made a tremendous difference. You are a shining example of the best UK has to offer.”

Commendation letter from the UK Cabinet Office.

Victor Osagie ‘s team had delivered the quality control system that rapidly converted disused warehouses into assembly lines. His team swiftly converted Ford Motors vehicle production lines and Airbus Aircraft production lines into Ventilator Production lines. They produced over 14,000 ventilators within a 90 day period. This boosted the NHS ventilator capacity from less than 9000 pre COVID19 era to the over 25000 capacity in July 2020.

British Prime Minister, Boris Johnson noted that the ventilator challenge has proven how much Britain can achieve when confronted with difficult problems.

“Bringing together the best minds in manufacturing, innovation and design was the right decision. Thanks to your effort, everyone who needs a ventilator had access to one. And the NHS has the vital machines needed to continue providing lifesaving support against the deadly virus,” the British Prime Minister stated.

On his part, Health and Social Care Secretary, Matt Hancock added that “We protected the NHS during this global pandemic. The impact of COVID – 19 showed the best and the brightest stepping forward to serve their country. The response the government received to this challenge was astonishing.”

A former director with the Central Bank of Nigeria, Mr Gabriel Ehilebo said assets like Victor Osagie will be value-added if Nigeria can get them to work with the Nigeria economic sustainability Committee to be able to robustly respond to the challenges posed by the COVID19 pandemic in Nigeria.

In his comment, Victor Osagie advised the Nigerian Government to redirect educational resources to producing medical personnel in doctors and nurses, Information technology consultants that can be exported all over the world to earn foreign exchange and also serve as a cheap source of further enhancing the skills of such person who can subsequently return home to provide world-class services. This will be an opportunity for addressing some of the challenges of graduate unemployment in Nigeria.

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