Abdulrazaq Mungadi, Gombe
The Gombe State Commissioner for Health, Mohammed Ahmed Gana, has confirmed that samples taken from four people who were suspected to have had contact with Bauchi State Governor Bala Mohammed have all tested negative for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19)
Dr Gana confirmed to Daily Sun on Saturday through a text message that all four cases have tested negative. The state’s Special Task Force Committee on COVID-19 had on Wednesday said that it had identified and advised the four suspected individuals to go into self-isolation following their suspected contact with the Bauchi governor who had tested positive for the virus, thus becoming the index case in Bauchi.
The committee which spoke through the Commissioner for Health said that, as a precautionary measure, the individuals were advised to go into self-isolation while awaiting results from the samples taken from them for confirmation.
While the suspected cases have been tested to be negative, the government of Gombe State has continued to roll out measures aimed at stemming the spread of the pandemic.
The State Governor, Muhammadu Inuwa Yahaya, on Friday announced a set of measures, including the suspension of interstate travel, shutting down of beer parlours and night clubs as well as other social gatherings. He also, after a security meeting with heads of security agencies in the state, directed the security agencies to enforce the government’s directives
Addressing reporters shortly after Friday’s security meeting, Commissioner of Police Bello Makwashi said the security agencies have been directed to enforce the directives issued by the state government.
“From now henceforth we are going to set up a monitoring and enforcement team to go round and ensure that those who are not observing the social restriction order actually comply with the directive. So that is what we deliberated upon and as soon as we leave here we are going to ensure that the directive is implemented,” the police commissioner said.
He went on to assure that the enforcement would not involve penalty to defaulters, saying that “we are not talking about penalty for now, but we really have to make people see that the reasons behind the government’s measures is not meant to constrain their freedom, it is not meant to inconvenience them but rather it is an effort to protect them from this dreaded disease.
“Ideally, the citizens ought to obey the simple preventive measures because it is for the good of the society, but a lot of people are not looking at it that way and, if you allow it, the pandemic will spread further. So that is why we have to be on the street and enforce it. Government has made a lot of efforts, including meeting with stakeholders, the market associations, they have talked to religious leaders and then traditional leaders too, so I am sure that those market leaders will find a way to see how they can actually observe this restriction and make sure that only those that are on essential service come out.
“Others should stay at home. The directive is for people to stay at home; the more you stay at home, the more you break the circle of contact,” Commissioner Makwashi explained.