Femi Folaranmi, Yenagoa
There is uneasy calm in Bayelsa State as the COVID-19 infection spreads to the Southern Ijaw and Ogbia Local Government Areas of the state.
This is just as the state witnessed a spike in infection with 27 new cases confirmed by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) bringing total active cases to 117.
The total number of cases confirmed in the case is 155, 29 have been discharged while nine deaths have been recorded.
According to investigations Yenagoa the capital situated in Yenagoa Local Government Area remains the epicentre of the infection in the state and the two active isolation centres at Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital (NDUTH), Okolobiri and the Federal Medical Centre (FMC) are situated there.
Findings revealed that officials of the State Task Force on COVID-19 are making frantic moves to float another isolation centre the FMC Yenagoa extension at Otuoke, Ogbia Local Government Area.
It was gathered that Bayelsa State Government officials are increasingly worried over the non-compliance with safety measures by residents of the state especially in churches which lead to the sealing of some churches.
However Governor Douye Diri who came under immense pressure from Christian religious leaders after a meeting buckled and directed the state task force on COVID-19 to unseal the churches and imposed fresh guidelines to stop the spread of the infection in the state.
Diri who had expressed concern over the spike in the number of infections in the state had cancelled all mid-week services and gatherings at home-cells
Sources said members of the state task force are frustrated that despite all the proactive steps the number keeping increasing.
The Taskforce in a statement by its Co-Chairman, Dr. Inodu Nathaniel Apoku, who is also the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Health has urged the public to adhere to the recommended Public health advisories to reduce the spread of the disease.
Dr. Apoku further tasks residents to always wear Facemasks when in public places wash their Hands with soap and water regularly, or use alcoholic based sanitizers, while also maintaining social distancing.
The state task in another statement signed by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Information and Orientation, Mr Freston Akpor warned residents of the state that COVID-19 is real and deadly.
It further advised citizens to stay at home if there is no compelling reason to go out.