By Esther Nworie
Ebonyi State Governor, Engr. David Umahi on Friday 19th June, 2020 announced that the state has recorded its first Covid-19 death, which he described as regrettable and saddening.
The Governor gave the directive in a broadcast to residents of the State through the state radio and ordered the immediate shut down of all building in the state.
He said judiciary are to remain shut for the next 10 days to enable health workers fumigate the buildings and premises.
He also ordered that all staff of the Judiciary in the state and their families should immediately proceed for COVID-19 test.
“It is unfortunate that we have recorded one death due to this Covid-19 and it makes me so sad.
“I am directing that in line with the Covid-19 law all the courts in Ebonyi state be shutdown for the next 10 days. The Judiciary, State High Court, Industrial Court, Federal High Court, Magistrate court should all be shutdown”,
“Also, I advise all the Judiciary officers and their families to undergo Covid-19 tests. I have ordered that all the Judiciary buildings and premises should be immediately fumigated within the 10 days”.
The governor advised marketers and churches to take the Covid-19 safety protocols seriously for their own good.
Umahi decried that people are not taking the pandemic serious as they ought to and warned that any church or market found flouting the Covid-19 law will be shutdown.
“We are not contemplating closing markets and churches but we advise them to please take this matter serious. If you are working ensure that you sanitise yourself every 10 minutes”.
“This is very serious. We have a spike because we have a high testing. People may have the Covid-19 but won’t show any symptoms but will go about spreading it.”
“Some people with the virus will argue that they are not showing any symptoms. Yes, your immune system is fighting it but the next person that may be weaker than you is at danger and our job is to protect everybody in Ebonyi.”
Governor Umahi regretted that the state has recorded some other deaths due to lack of attention to other ailments by medical workers.
“There are some other deaths that are not connected with Covid-19. I want to plead with our hospitals to please isolate any Covid-19 suspected case to our isolation centres so that our people who are sick can get treatment.”
“People are dying because they can no longer get medical treatment. All our attentions are being diverted to Covid-19 treatment. Sometimes people are afraid to go to hospital because they afraid they might contact Covid-19 and because to they are not sure how the hospitals will handle them. I appeal that people should be allowed to get their normal medical treatment to save lives”.
The Governor said the two isolation centres at Unity Square Abakaliki and the Alex Ekwueme Federal University Teaching Hospital are already filled up with patients.
“Fortunately we had envisaged this and quickly moved to renovate the Elinwovbu General Hospital. The hospital with 150 bed capacity has been upgraded to a Covid-19 isolation centre with all the necessary facilities”.
He said more general hospitals will be converted to isolation centres as his administration is determined to do all within his powers to protect the lives of the people from the deadly pandemic.
Mr Umahi pledged to continue supporting health workers who are at the Frontline of the fight against the virus in the state.
The state according to latest data from the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) had recorded 234 confirmed cases.
The first case according to report is from Afikpo axis of the State and that the Covid-19 death patient was buried four hours after his death.