Richard Elesho/ Lokoja
Following the speed at which the dreaded Coronavirus is ravaging the country, the Kogi State Government has drawn a road map against the pandemic in the state. Governor Yahaya Bello on Monday, inaugurated a 29-man squad headed by his deputy, Edward Onoja to manage the situation.
At its maiden meeting, the group confirmed that there has been no reported case of the coronavirus disease in the state. It, however, streamlined measures to combat the virus whenever it debuts in the state.
A major step is the creation of an Isolation/Containment Center at the FAREC Clinic at GRA Lokoja. This was made known by Kingsley Fanwo, Commissioner for Information and Communication in an interaction with journalists.
Fanwo said the committee agreed that the pandemic is more serious than earlier thought; hence the need to deal with it with all the seriousness and commitment it deserves.
“The Committee resolved to ban all forms of social or religious gatherings. There will be no more gatherings in churches, Mosques, Clubs, beer joints, weddings or burials. The ban is with immediate effect.
He said the committee resolved to trace and track people who just returned to the state from affected countries with a view to detecting their status and that laboratories in the State are to be upgraded to be able to test for Coronavirus.
“Henceforth, vehicles traversing the State will not be allowed to stopover in the state, except it is established that some of their passengers will be alighting within the State. They will also be allowed to buy fuel in the State.
Fanwo explained that hotels, restaurants and other offices will be made to provide water, soap and sanitizers for their customers to wash their hands.
According to him, the Committee also mooted the idea of banning Okada Transport in order to reduce contact and also stop people from leaving their homes indiscriminately. No final decision has been taken on that.
“Senior Special Assistants to the Governor on Security as well as the Directors of Local Government Areas are to coordinate grassroots sensitization as efforts are on at deploying Town Criers to carry the message of the Committee to the grassroots.
Fanwo advised Kogites to stay at home in order to reduce the risk of contracting the virus. Personal hygiene should also be taken seriously. People suspected to be showing symptoms of coronavirus should be reported to the committee for immediate help.