Airtel Nigeria on Monday said that it had donated 40 mobile phones complete with a Closed User Group (CUG) to the Port Health Services.
Mr Segun Ogunsanya, Managing Director, Airtel Nigeria, said in a statement that the donation was to support efforts to track and verify passenger information at the country’s local and international airports.
According to him, Airtel has commenced a national awareness campaign on coronavirus to curb the spread of the deadly disease.
“The nationwide awareness campaign will go live on March 24 and will be heavy on both traditional and social media.
“It will be with simple and creative messages that will be translated into Yoruba, Hausa and Igbo and broadcast across radio, billboard, press, phones devices and digital media,” he said.
Ogunsanya said in addition to the national campaign and donations to the Port Health Services, Airtel has also zero-rated visits to the websites of Nigerian Centre for Disease Control and Federal Ministry of Health.
He said the network ID on customers’ handset had been changed to read, ‘Be Safe.’
He, however, said the phones donated to the port health services, would ensure that passengers on incoming flights from the affected countries globally, who may be at risk, could be reached post arrival for further medical checks and quarantine where necessary.
“The phones, airtime and CUG are probably the least we can do in the circumstance to empower the gallant men and women at the forefront of the fight against the scourge.
“It is also our belief that the robust national campaign will deepen awareness and help more Nigerians to take the precautionary measures seriously,” he said.
Ogunsanya added that education was a key element of the fight against the scourge and nothing is too little or too much to do to help people know more and do more to protect themselves and others from the pandemic.
Dr Morenike Alex-Okoh, Director of Nigeria Port Health Services, commended Airtel Nigeria for pledging its support immediately the request was made and fulfilling the promise within a short space of time.
“We are inspired by the show of corporate social responsibility by Airtel and look forward to similar support from other organisations not only to the Port Health Services but to the overall effort to fight the Coronavirus pandemic,” she said.
Ogunsanya recalled that in 2014, Airtel Nigeria partnered with the African Union on the “Kick Ebola out of Africa Campaign’’ by donating mobile phones, sim cards and airtime to all the 290 Nigerian doctors, nurses and other care-givers, who volunteered to join the fight against Ebola.
“As a critical stakeholder in the Nigerian society, Airtel Nigeria is passionate about the safety and health of its citizens as this aligns with our overall CSR theme of touching lives and improving the standard of living in our communities.
“The fight against coronavirus is another opportunity to demonstrate this commitment,” the CEO said.