By Suleiman Umaru
Between Monday, May 4, 2020, and now, confirmed the Wuhan Town in Hebei Province of the Asian country of China manufactured Coronavirus cases, popular, COVID 19, in Lagos, the nation’s Commercial nerve center, described as the epicenter Of the disease, by the Nigeria center for Disease and Control ,NCDC, had been on the increase without showing any signs of declining in the recent time.
This is an indications that the health agency under the close watch of Chikwe Ihekweazu and the Presidential Task Force, PTF, under the Chairmanship of Boss Mustapha, who incidentally is the Secretary of the Federation have much work to do to bring the situation under control.
With more than half of all the states of the Federation gradually relaxing the lock down the past two weeks, the situation appears to have become worrisome in Lagos, though there had been a consistent decline in the confirmed Case in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory, FCT, which was initially ranked at the same category with Lagos, thus forcing President Muhammadu Buhari to declare a two week lockdown of the FCT, Lagos and Ogun , because of its proximity to Lagos. The lockdown was later extended by another two weeks in order to force people to stay at home to bring the situation under control but that was how far he could go. The governors had followed suit to do same in their respective states.
No sooner had the Kadsina born Nigerian president announced a phasing of the lockdown in Lagos, Abuja and Ogun, than the governors began the relaxation of the lockdown in their states. The latest statement by the NCDC had shown that the confirmed new discoveries of the disease had been fluctuating in the past one month with Lagos topping the list.
The report which was released late Saturday , May 16,2020, shows that there were 176 confirmed new cases , thus bringing the total number of infected patients in the country to 5, 621. Lagos alone, according to the NCDC, report, had produced 95, confirmed COVID 19, Cases. The bad news was that three of the returnees recently evacuated from Dubai, United Arab Emirate, UAE, and quarantined in Lagos, for the mandatory two weeks, who were said to have tested positive to the disease, w may have shut up the Lagos figure.
The NCDC, report, also confirmed that Oyo which have never been known to produce much COVID 1 9 patients had produced 31 infected persons, and 11 FCT, 11. Kano, Katsina and Jijawa, three north western states , which had been in the news in the past three weeks because of the rising cases of the disease may have shocked may as there were no reported cases of infected patients.
But Kaduna , another state in the region was said to witnessed a significant decline as its figure as at late Saturday was said to have dropped to 4 while Borno, a north eastern geo-political region state, which had witnessed many deaths in the past days caused by the disease was said to have also had its reported Confirmed cases of COVID 19 drop to 8, giving Babagana Umara Zulum, a professor and the state governor a cause to be happy. But there are fears that that the joy may be short-lived because of the situation of the state which exposes it to all manners of people whose health status could not be ascertained by health workers.
Medical experts, however, believe that by the time the NCDC, start administering the drugs that may be approved by the World Health Organisation WHO, a United Nation’s health agency in its Solidarity launching and International clinical testing of the various drugs that had been designed and developed for the Treatment of the disease, the figure of confirmed patients in the country will drop significantly.
Note that with the expiration of the additional two weeks lock down of Ogun state, Dapo Abiodun the Ogun state governor , who had earlier extended the lockdown in the state by week was said to have further extended by an additional one week but maintained the night curfew approved by the President must be enforced by security agencies personnel.
The situation Kaduna was not different as Nasir el-Rufai, the governor , had earlier extended the lockdown in the state by one month based on the recommendations of the state Committee on COVID 19, headed by Hadiza Balarabe, the deputy governor. The governor, according to Muyiwa Adekeye, the Special Adviser on Media and Communications had reviewed the quarantine orders to strengthen the provisions against unauthorised movements in the state in order to curb the spread of the disease.
Meanwhile the northern states governors in a bid to contain the disease in the region had signed an agreement for the deportation of Almajris from the various northern states to their indigenous states. The Kaduna state governor who could not hide his feelings said the COVI 19, had provided opportunity for them to relocate the almajiris as many of them deported from Kano back to the state could have died if they had remained in Kano. He disclosed that over 30,000 almajiris have been sent back to their indigenous states so far.
In spite of the relocation of the almajiris back to their indigenous states, that had not stopped the spread of the disease in the region, although it had dropped significantly in Kano, Katsina and Jigawa, an indication that the almajiris were part of the people spreading the disease in the three northern states.