Bamigbola Gbolagunte, Akure
Palpable fear of contacting coronavirus disease now grip traditional rulers in Ondo State and House of Assembly members following disclosure by Governor Rotimi Akeredolu that he tested positive for the disease.
The apprehension was as a result of the close contact some monarchs and lawmakers had with the governor before he announced his COVID-19 status.
Members of the state council of traditional rulers had, last week, endorsed Akeredolu for a second term in office.
The traditional rulers, led by the Olugbo of Ugbo, Oba Fredrick Akinruntan, had, during the endorsement programme at the government house, embraced the governor.
Many of the traditional rulers also had close interaction with Governor Akeredolu during the event, even as some of them hugged him after the ceremony.
This development has caused apprehension in the minds of many of the traditional rulers and many residents of the state have urged them to go for COVID-19 test, even as they isolate themselves.
Also, there is anxiety that many of the lawmakers, who followed Akeredolu to the national secretariat of the All Progressives Congress (APC) to submit his governorship nomination form, might have contacted the disease following their close interaction during the ceremony.
A video, which has gone viral on the social media, showed Governor Akeredolu sneezing into his palm while he danced and embraced the lawmakers during the event.
The state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has, therefore, called on the lawmakers and other APC members that attended the function to go for COVID-19 test.
The party’s Publicity Secretary, Zadok Akintoye, said the people of the state are daily subjected to risk as a result of the action of the governor and some of his loyalists.
It was, however, learnt that many of the lawmakers and traditional rulers are in fear as they are yet to know their fate.