Thisday Dome-converted makeshift hospital in Abuja, the capital city of Nigeria
 

A China-assisted makeshift hospital, the largest of its kind in Nigeria, was handed over to the Nigerian government on Tuesday, shoring up the western African nation’s defenses against the COVID-19 pandemic.

The hospital, the first makeshift facility in Abuja, the capital city of Nigeria, is a renovation of the Thisday Dome. It was designed to house 283 beds including six intensive care unit beds, CCECC Nigeria Ltd, the Chinese firm tasked with design, construction and remodeling of the facility, said in a statement sent to the Global Times.

A handover event was held on Tuesday attended by senior Nigerian officials including Boss Mustapha, Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation. The nation’s Minister of Health, Central Bank Governor, Minister of the Federal Capital Territory Administration are also among the attendees.

CCECC Nigeria Ltd, a subsidiary of China Civil Engineering Construction Corp (CCECC), began an exploration onsite on March 30, swiftly drew up a design plan, and dispatched staffers to the construction site on April 2, in accordance with the instruction of the government in Nigeria. CCECC operates as a subsidiary of China Railway Construction Corporation, one of the world’s largest engineering contractors.

A total of 30 Chinese employees, 85 local staffers and 12 sets of equipment were assigned to the swift effort that managed to overcome restrictions on procurement activity and staff mobility factoring in a lockdown in the capital city’s central business district, where the makeshift facility is located, the firm revealed. It took only two weeks to complete construction and a local oil firm tasked with assembly and testing completed the rest of the remodeling.

Nigeria is among the hardest-hit countries in Africa. As of 7:50pm Tuesday Beijing time, the nation’s confirmed infections had hit 4,641, with 150 deaths, according to Johns Hopkins University.

In addition to the Thisday Dome-converted facility, CCECC Nigeria Ltd also helped build another makeshift hospital in Abuja.

(In association with Global Times)