Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Asagba of Asaba, Chike Edozien, has suspended the breaking of kolanuts as fears continue to mount over the spread of coronavirus disease.
The traditional ruler explained that aspect of the culture and tradition was suspended because it involves direct communal contact as people are expected to dip hands into the same bowl.
He spoke during a visit to his palace by a Delta Ministry of Health team on awareness campaign on the global pandemic.
“That will not be consistent with the rules (medical advice) and for that reason, a temporary suspension has been placed on the breaking of kolanuts,” he said.
Edozien warned that if strict precautions are not taken, the disease could affect communities with dire consequences.
“It is very important we follow the directions which we have been given by World Health Organisation (WHO) and the federal and state governments. If we do not do this, the results will be hazardous,” the monarch said.
He directed all community heads to spread the message of precaution to quarters, villages and clans, expressing fears that neighbouring states, including Edo, now have confirmed case of the disease.
Earlier, the Health Educator, Ijeoma Popo, explained the history of the disease, and its mode of transmission and symptoms to look out for.
Popo advised residents who are 60 years and above to remain indoors, noting that their immune system may not withstand the virus if attacked.
She emphasised the need for regular hand washing with soap and running water or the use of alcohol-based sanitisers, as well as social distancing among other preventive measures. Popo appealed to the monarch to regulate activities of traders in the market to comply with social distancing, recommending that only 10 traders should be allowed on the isles per day.
“The only way we can stop the spread is for us to obey rules,” she said.