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Cleric urges government to support Nigerians with palliatives

The Catholic Archbishop of Lagos, Alfred Adewale Martins has urged government to support more Nigerians with palliatives as they continue to struggle with the harsh economic realities on the back of the lockdown occasioned by the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) and owing to the fact that people are not earning as much now as they used to earn before the outbreak of the pandemic in the country.

Martins made the appeal in commemoration of the 54th World Communications Day, urging government to do everything necessary for the people to continue to receive palliatives at this critical period. According to Martins, the words of Pope Francis were very important and relevant to the current happening across the world.

Quoting Pope Francis, Martins said there was need to tell stories that build up, not tear down; stories that help us rediscover our roots and the strength needed to move forward together.

“Amid the cacophony of voices and messages that surround us, we need a human story that can speak of ourselves and of the beauty all around us.

“A narrative that can regard our world and its happenings with a tender gaze. A narrative that can tell us that we are part of a living and interconnected tapestry. A narrative that can reveal the interweaving of the threads which connect us to one another,” said Martins while quoting Pope Francis.

The World Communications Day was established by Pope Paul VI in 1967 as an annual celebration that encourages us to reflect on the opportunities and challenges that the modern means of social communication (the press, motions pictures, radio, television and the internet) afford the Church to communicate the gospel message and is celebrated on the Sunday before Pentecost.

On the current ravaging COVID-19, Martins pleaded with government to give credence to herbal drugs, stating that traditional herbal medicines have their own healing effects and should be considered for the treatment of COVID-19.

“Herbal medicine has its healing effect and I think it is important that government gives local practitioners and researchers opportunities to research into the use of our local herbal roots and come up with remedies from them for this Coronavirus pandemic,” he said.

According to Martins, local remedies from herbs have been effective in curing different types of diseases before, and it is only appropriate that they are given a chance to prove their efficacy at this point in time.

“We understand that there is the need for test and validation of local herbs. Madagascar has developed its own and was embraced by the Federal Government.

“That has created the urgency for our government to pay attention to the development and promotion of our own indigenous herbal products and remedies offered by others that will lead to an end to COVID-19 pandemic in our country,” Martins said.

Speaking on increased rate of testing being conducted across the country, the Catholic Archbishop of Lagos said that it was a great concern that the number of infected people were increasing daily, adding that it was a measure of relief to some extent that people were submitting themselves for testing.

“This is an indication that more people are being tested for coronavirus which means that those who have the virus are being identified and treated. This is a sign of hope and by the grace of God, we shall see the end of this pandemic,” he said.

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