Amid numerous precautionary measures canvassed to contain the dreaded corona virus, the Honourable Commissioner for Environment and Petroleum Resources in Akwa Ibom State, Dr. (Barr.) Ekong Sampson, has called on the people of the state to pay serious attention to personal hygiene and environmental cleanliness, even as the state government is set to clamp down on illegal felling of trees in city centres.
The Federal Government, through the Federal Ministry of Health, has been strengthening measures to ensure an outbreak in Nigeria is controlled and contained quickly. The multi-sectoral Coronavirus Preparedness Group, led by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), has since activated its national Emergency Operations Centre and will work closely with Lagos State Health authorities to respond to this case and implement firm control measures.
“I wish to assure all Nigerians that have we have been beefing up our preparedness capabilities since the first confirmation of cases in China, and we will use all the resources made available by the government to respond to this case.
“We have already started working to identify all the contacts of the patient, since he entered Nigeria. Please be reminded that most people who become infected may experience only mild illness and recover easily, but it can be more severe in others, particularly the elderly and persons with other underlying chronic illnesses. All Nigerians should take care of their health and maintain hand and respiratory hygiene to protect themselves and others, including their own families, following the precautions below:
1. Regularly and thoroughly wash your hands with soap and water, and use alcohol-based hand sanitiser.
2. Maintain at least 1 & half metres (5 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
3. Persons with persistent cough or sneezing should stay home or keep a social distance, but not mix in crowd.
4. Make sure you and people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene, meaning cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or into your sleeve at the bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately.
5. Stay home if you feel unwell with symptoms like fever, cough and difficulty in breathing. Please call NCDC toll free number which is available day and night, for guidance- 0800-970000-10. Do not engage in self-medication
6. Stay informed on the latest developments about COVID-19 through official channels on TV and Radio, including the Lagos State Ministry of Health, NCDC and Federal Ministry of Health.
Citizens must not abuse social media and indulge in spreading misinformation that causes fear and panic. The Federal Ministry of Health, through Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, will continue to provide updates and will initiate all measures required to prevent the spread of any outbreak in Nigeria,” announced Dr. Osagie Ehanire, Hon. Minister of Health.
As at the time of filing this article, over 9,000 cases have been confirmed in Nigeria, over 3,000 cases have been discharged and about 300 deaths have been recorded in 35 states and the Federal Capital Territory, having carried out 48,544 tests.
AKWA IBOM COVID-19 INDEX CASES
-Dr Otobong Asuquo, a specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, after recovering from the disease at Ibom Specialty Hospital.
As at April 1, 2020, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) confirmed 5 cases of the disease in Akwa Ibom State, and Dr Otobong Asuquo, a specialist in Obstetrics and Gynaecology, was one of the cases.
Dr Asuquo, in his detailed account after recovering from the disease at Ibom Specialist Hospital in Uyo, said he received a call immediately from the state COVID-19 team to get set that an ambulance would be coming to pick him.
Different thoughts went through his mind: his dear wife, children, and when he saw how others in different parts of the world were passing away, he thought his end was near!
At the isolation centre, Dr Asuquo said he enjoyed his stay because of the privacy, the modern facilities, and equipment at the hospital.
“You don’t know what is happening and who is in the next room. Constant water and light, it’s like having the U.S. in Akwa Ibom,” he said in a video chat.
He added that he was surprised to know that all the rooms there are equipped with Television sets (with DSTV) and that there’s free WIFI for browsing the Internet, which made him stay updated and worked on his personal project.
Although he was silent on the treatment he received that led to his recovery in less than two weeks, he was thankful to the state government for a job well done.
“I want to give kudos to the Akwa Ibom State Government because I know without them, this wouldn’t have been possible and also for the [COVID-19] team.”
Akwa Ibom State so far has 35 active cases of the disease, with 2 deaths and 14 recoveries of which Dr Asuquo is one of them.
“Your Excellency, why are you embarking on the building of a permanent structure as isolation centre as against using available empty space in the state or building a large tent as other states are doing. I am saying this because time is not on our side plus the cost, as we are in a crisis situation, why not put up a temporary thing”?Read More ISOLATION CENTRE: A FIGHT AGAINST FUTURE MEDICAL EMERGENCIES
Many states in the federation have, as a matter of urgency, taken steps to cushion the economic threats posed by the outbreak of the corona virus, otherwise known as Covid-19. It was on this basis that the Akwa Ibom State Government under leadership of Governor Udom Emmanuel, has recently inaugurated an economic committee to design a road map for economic growth and sustainability, amidst the pandemic.Read More Foundation For Post-COVID-19 Economic Recovery in Akwa Ibom
Sometimes in our earthly lives, some deleterious situations show up, and it feels like the firmament above is soon tumbling down, beckoning the very end to everything about this life, threatening our very existence. But soon we come to terms with the fact that such times would come, stay a while and leave, for it is established that only tough people last, and never tough times! Trust me, that is truly where we are now.Read More Beyond The Pangs Of COVID-19
Our Magazine had a very elaborate interview with one of the finest economists in the Niger Delta region of Nigeria. In this interview, Prof. Chris Ekong of University of Uyo, provides deep insight to a lot of issues ranging from the economic impact of COVID-19 on Nigerians on matters concerning the economy and development in the Niger Delta region. Excepts:Read More World Economy Is Already In Recession Because Of COVID-19