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 Covid-19: Wike orders compulsory testing for all Rivers Govt House staff

Covid-19: Wike orders compulsory testing for all Rivers Govt House staff


GOVERNOR Nyesom Wike of Rivers State has directed all Government House personnel to undergo compulsory Covid-19 test to ascertain their status.

Wike who disclosed this in Port Harcourt, yesterday, while receiving three ambulances donated by the BUA Foundation, said the increased testing currently revealing more positive cases in the state was informed by the commitment of his government to save more lives against the pandemic.

He said, “The more we test, the more the number will increase and we are willing to continue to test. Let our people know that this not the kind of sickness to be ashamed of. Nobody knows who you have shaken hands with. We have lost not less than 38 lives on record.

“Nobody will be happy that each day you wake up, you hear somebody, probably a breadwinner, is no longer there because of covid-19. I have directed that all staff of Government House must go for testing. Nobody knows who is a carrier and we must save everybody as much as we can.”

On the gesture by the BUA group led by its Executive Director, Khalifa Rabiu, Wike acknowledged that, “BUA has not only come to support us at this critical period but has shown that really, they are part and parcel of the state. Many companies shy away from identifying with the state they operate for lack of understanding.

“Making profit alone is what is important to them but to support the government to save lives is very difficult for them. You have donated to the Rivers State government the sum N100million before, you have given us a lorry load of other items.

“Today, you have given us three life support ambulances. I sincerely say that Rivers State government will continue to identify with you and to make sure we make the environment easy for you to continue to do your business.”

Executive Director of BUA Foundation, Rabiu lauded Wike for creating a conducive business environment for their operations, adding that the foundation had offered the material support to assist the state in containing Covid-19.

Fear grips A’Ibom Govt House staff as more tests positive

Meanwhile, fear has gripped Akwa Ibom State  Government House workers as more people tests positive for the Covid-19 pandemic.

It will be recalled that over 10 members of the Government House Press Corps team especially the cameramen last month were infected by the virus.

A reliable Government House source who disclosed this to newsmen, yesterday, in Uyo on condition of anonymity said most of the workers who were subjected to test recently tested positive.

The source noted that Governor Udom Emmanuel, moved by the effect of the virus within the press corps ordered massive testing of other units within the Government House.

The source expressed concern that the alarming rate of infected persons within the Government House, to a very great extent, revealed how unsafe the entire state may be.

He said, “It will shock you that in two days, we recorded 17 and 18 cases respectively. Both domestic staff, protocol, security and others working in Government House were; on the order of His Excellency subjected to test, and most of them turned out positive.

“These are close to the governor and have the opportunity to be tested and treated. What happens to people who have no such opportunity? Our people may just begin to die massively. We need to do more testing. Also, we need to test those that are not close to the corridors of power.

“And members of the press corps throughout the lockdown worked closely with members of the state executive council, how then did most of them test positive for Covid-19 if the people they worked closely with are as clean as they claimed.”

State Commissioner for Information, Mr Charles Udoh, when contacted by newsmen did not deny that more staff of the Government House could have tested positive for Covid-19.

Udoh, however, said that key persons in the State Incidence  Committee and principal staff of the Government House have not tested positive.

Edo death toll hits 35

Edo State government, yesterday, said, it has recorded 35 deaths to the ravaging covid-19, while reiterating the need for residents to adhere to preventive measures, such as the use of face masks, hand washing and physical distancing to protect themselves and others from being infected with the virus.

The state government also said that nearly 1,000 persons are infected in the state.

State Commissioner for Health, Dr Patrick Okundia, who spoke yesterday, charged citizens to support the government’s efforts at curbing the spread of coronavirus and protecting the people by complying with the guidelines to contain the pandemic.

He said, “Complying with these directives will imply that we care about the wellbeing of others, especially the elderly, and are determined to protect them from getting infected by the deadly virus that has continued to claim thousands of lives globally.

“The Edo State Government has taken serious steps to contain the pandemic across all communities in the state, but we have observed poor compliance among members of the public to the Covid-19 preventive measures. This is even worse as some give out wrong addresses and phone numbers during sample collection, which makes it difficult for contact tracers to track down confirmed cases after laboratory results are released.”

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