Members of the University of Uyo (UNIUYO) Alumni Association on Friday donated N5 million grant in support of medical research towards finding a cure for the novel Coronavirus.
The donation was made to the Akwa Ibom State Council of the Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria (PSN) and the Faculty of Pharmacy, University of Uyo.
The president of the association, Onofiok Luke, made the donation on behalf of the association in Uyo.
Mr Luke, a member of the House of Representatives, said the grant is the association’s modest contribution in support of the effort to find solutions to the COVID-19 scourge, whose cure has so far defied medical experience.
“Since the outbreak of the virus many advanced societies have been devastated with millions of their citizens dying because there is yet no cure.
“In a bid to find the cure, universities around the world are working tirelessly on researches and sharing information on a possible cure in a bid to bring an end to the pandemic,” Mr Luke said.
He said the grant was the association’s way to encourage and support the relevant department in the university to join in this global effort to find solutions to a global scourge.
The alumni’s president said he was optimistic the true cure to this global pandemic could be found in Akwa Ibom State if the resources in the laboratories of the Faculty of Pharmacy of the University of Uyo are properly harnessed.
“This particular strain of the virus was unknown to man, but now it is here. Our researchers and research institutions need to rise to the occasion in challenging this Pandemic that has threatened our collective existence.
“Let us not think that the cure to Coronavirus will come or can only come from abroad. It could be right here with us in Akwa Ibom, and it is in the hands of researchers to bring it forth,” he said.
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He charged members of the PSN and the Faculty of Pharmacy of University of Uyo to put in their best effort and ensure appropriate use of the funds, while reassuring them of the support of the entire alumni in the endeavour.
Receiving the grant, the Dean of Pharmacy, Faculty of Pharmacy of the university, Emmanuel Etim, thanked the Alumni for the initiative.
He applauded the leadership of the association for its show of solidarity and acknowledged that the desire for scientific work was always there but was hampered by the paucity of funds.
He pledged that the funds would be used judiciously in pursuit of the objective it was meant for the good of humanity in Akwa Ibom in particular and the world in general.
Responding, chairman, Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria, Akwaowoh Akpabio, appreciated the gesture and prayed God’s wisdom on the leadership of the alumni.
The event held at the Dean’s Conference room, Faculty of Pharmacy, University of uyo, was witnessed by members of the Executive of the Association, Vice Dean of Student’s Affairs, Essien Akpan Uko, amongst others.