Dr Chukwuma O.Nwaonicha is a thorough bred Nigerian,an American trained Organic Chemist and researcher.He worked and lived in the United States of America for almost four decades before returning to Nigeria.In this interview he granted journalists at his residence in Agbor, the Agbor born scientist spoke on Covid-19 pandemic,why Nigerians should comply and cooperate with Government and the need to diversify the country’s economy
Good day sir,may we meet you?
I am Dr Chukwuma O. Nwaonicha,an American trained Organic Chemist and a researcher.
What is your take on the dreaded Covid-19 pandemic that is currently ravaging the entire world?
Before now, we have gotten different cases of virus, none was deadly as Covid-19 that has sent many to graves.Covid-19 according to reports started in the U.S and China. It has also been alleged that the virus originated from—— market in Wuhan,China closed to the country’s virology laboratory.
It was also alleged that it escaped unintentionally from the laboratory.
Another scenario was that it was intentionally released to the environment.
There are lots of secrecy behind the outbreak of the virus,at the moment nobody knows how it came. It was alleged that the virus started in US laboratory and later transferred to Wuham virology laboratory in China with a funding of about 5.5 million dollars. However, majority believed that the virus was found in bats in Southern China.
Looking at the rate the virus has spread so far across the globe,don’t you think it’s potency will be reducing by now?
The rate the virus is spreading is quite fast instead of weakening. That’s why it is difficult for scientists to understand why it is still propagating. It is a difficult issue to understand, that is why at present the whole world is engaged with social distancing.Even when the medication is found, as long as the virus is still spreading we still have to maintain social distancing and the use of face mask. Though, as disclosed by experts face mask is not too healthy for human beings because it is made for medical cases,it doesn’t has to be permanent on your face.
Do you think the virus will go soon?
I don’t think so,it will only end soon if the virus stops spreading.The world has to embrace a very long term effect of the disease. Without the spreading stopping, there is no way there can be a better tomorrow but, we pray for a better tomorrow. However, both China and US are working very hard to get a curable vaccine for the virus. But, the virus requires a combination of drugs because of the nature of the disease, it comes with pain,cough and inflammation of the lungs.
Why is there high death rates in Europe and America compared to Africa?
In Europe, Italy precisely, the vaccine has been contaminated.Italy has lots of tourist attractions, including the cold wheather there. The virus goes with cold whether. We hope the effects of the virus will be reduced in this summer period. Nobody is immune with the virus. Your immune system has to be high to withstand it. There are people who have it but, you can’t know because they have strong immune system.
Madagascer was able to come up with a herbal cure, do you think that herbal cure should also be applied in Nigeria?
Yes! like I said earlier, the cure or prevention of the virus was a combination of drugs. When you look at Madagascar miracle herbal medicine it comprises ginger, garlic, lime, lemon and pawpaw leaves boiled together. In Chemistry, there are different compounds for this leaves. So, it is something Africans have to embrace. I believe that the Madagascar herbal medicine is a very good treatment to prevent the virus or maybe to cure the virus.
Today, Madagascar does not have a single death case though, they have many people infected. We should embrace that as it is simple to prepare.
It’s unfortunate that the Nigerian government is not ready to do research even when there is going to be research, the country doesn’t have the laboratory. Like the saying goes, “A physician is not honoured in his town”. We have intelligent researchers and scientists who are not given the chance. I have been thinking of various compounds that can be can be used but, there is no laboratory or chemicals to do the research, because you have to have laboratories and chemicals to analyze your products.
After this pandemic, do you think the world economy will remain the same?
After this period, one thing I know is that the world economy will change. Nobody knows tomorrow. Production will change,things will change. Presently, the economy is down due to the effect of the virus. Therefore,
Nigerians should bring new ways of production.
They should engage in mechanized farming.We should go back to farming as a way forward.
Government should go into serious agriculture.
Nigerians should comply and cooperate with the government . We should comply with the rules of government on Covid-19 pandemic. Nobody expected the virus, be patient with the government and work hard. Remember to maintain social distancing and use your face mask as we pray that the way the virus is spreading in the western world it would not be the same in Africa.
Covid-19 is real, whether it is intentionally released from the Wuhan laboratory or accidentally released from the ——– market in China in Wuhan or from the shoe horse bat it doesn’t matter. Going forward is what we will embrace.
What is your advise to Government as efforts are strongly on everyday to curb the Covid-19 pandemic?
Government at all levels should remain focused until the Covid-19 pandemic is defeated.Government should henceforth take agriculture seriously and pay less attention to oil.I am very optimistic that the world over this present predicament brought by the Covid-19 pandemic.Let compliance to Government directives remain our watchword,we should also remain hopeful, patient and cooperative with Government for that is the best way to achieve maximum result.