A team of engineers in Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria, has towed the path of its contemporaries in University of Benin (UNIBEN) and Bayero University, Kano (BUK) to make a locally invented ventilator to enhance the fight against COVID-19 in Nigeria.
The director, Equipment Maintenance and Development Centre at ABU, Prof. Muhammad-Sani Sallau, said at the unveiling of the equipment at the university in Zaria on Friday that the university has made a breakthrough and working toward safeguarding the innovation of the product.
“We are currently processing the patenting as well as trade marking to further safeguard the product, adding that “We are receiving maximum cooperation from government agencies in this regard,” Sallau said.
He added that the university was in the process of getting the needed equipment to produce more ventilators as part of its academic research contribution in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria.
Speaking about the possibility of mass production, he said “As a research centre, we only invent but look for companies and organisations to sponsor the project for mass production.”
He urged the government to fund the innovation to help boost mass production of the home made ventilator, so as to reduce import of ventilators as well as save foreign exchange.
According to him, Raw Materials Research and Development Centre (RMRDC) has acknowledged that the ventilator produced by ABU engineers was the best among those produced with local materials that they have come across.
He said RMRDC has also promised to link the university with the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 to endorse the project for sponsorship.
One of the engineers in the team, Dr Kaisan Muhammad Usman, of Mechanical Engineering Department, ABU, said the project was to complement government efforts in the fight against the spread the COVID-19 in Nigeria.
He called on the government to develop the university’s capacity to produce the machine in large quantity and also to fund research and innovation in the Nigerian Universities.