With the discovery of two separate COVID-19 cases in Kwara State, the State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRasaq on Tuesday confirmed that no fewer than 75 persons suspected to have had contacts with the victims in the State are already in isolation for medical observation about their health status.
The Governor disclosed this on Tuesday while addressing newsmen at the Government House Ilorin, the state capital.
Abdulrahman spoke mainly on situation reports about the pandemic outbreak in the state on Monday.
He said the State government received the official report from the NCDC of samples earlier taken to the Ibadan test centre, in which the tests of two persons were confirmed of COVID-19.
The first case is the wife of a man who recently returned from the UK, while the second person is a diabetic patient who also had a travel history to the UK.
According to him, “Our job is cut out for us and we are definitely not dropping the ball. Contact tracing by the Rapid Response Team of the medical advisory committee has so far netted 75 persons who have had contacts with the cases and the suspected case at UITH”.
He said that the state is not helpless or without reasonable preparation about the outbreak of the pandemic.
“We urge Kwarans to avoid crowded space, isolate themselves, and call our helplines if they have just returned from places of interest in the last three weeks. The government is extending the ongoing fumigation exercise to all the places of interest, including the relevant locations in Offa and Ilorin, where contamination may have occurred as a result of how infectious the disease is”
He, however, said “Notwithstanding our preparation, we are not ashamed to say that Kwara State will be glad to get all the help it can receive at this moment. We commend everyone who has been doing so much in this regard and we call for more” he said.
Breach of trust
While reacting to the late Muideen Obanimomo case at UITH, who was suspected to have died of COVID-19, AbdulRahman said,
“The government is utterly disappointed at the breach of trust that played out in the UITH case. Without prejudice to the internal investigation by UITH, we demand the immediate suspension of Professor Alakija Kazeem Salami and every other official of UITH whose professional misconduct brought us down this path pending the outcome of the ongoing probe”.
Stay at home order
On the compliance of residents on the stay at home order, AbdulRahman said the state technical committee of COVID-19 pandemic would roll out more measures to ensure people complied with the directive.
According to him, highlights of the measures will include “sanctions for anyone caught endangering public safety in whatever form or seeking to unfairly profit from our collective vulnerability and need for essential commodities at this time.
“The government is doubling down in the ongoing sensitization of the public across all media platforms on the danger of this virus. We need everyone to join this public advocacy in their various localities without exposing themselves or others to danger.
Finally, Kwarans, this is no time to panic. Please stay calm. We will do everything to keep you safe. But we also need everyone to play their own role. Stay at home. Keep social distancing. Avoid crowds. Prioritize personal hygiene. And please do not spread unverified news” the Governor said.
Meanwhile, the State Commissioner of Health, Dr. Raji Rasaq also made it known at the press briefing that tracing of contacts is still ongoing both in Offa and Ilorin, and said the team would keep briefing the general populace as event unfold.