Paul Osuyi, Asaba
Delta State Governor Dr Ifeanyi Okowa has deplored the increasing incidences of COVID-19 in the state, saying it has become obvious that community transmission of the virus has reached alarming and frightening proportions.
As of Friday night, the state had reported 781 confirmed cases of the virus after its index case of April 7.
The Delta governor is himself on a 14-day self-isolation after one of his daughters tested positive for the virus.
This also follows confirmation of the COVID-19 positive status of two top government appointees at the forefront of the fight against the pandemic in the state.
The two appointees, Secretary to State Government Chiedu Ebie and Commissioner for Information Charles Aniagwu, are said to be responding positively to treatment.
Expressing his concerns in a statement he personally signed on Saturday, Governor Okowa said it was regrettable that many persons still think that the Coronavirus disease was a hoax.
‘It cannot be a hoax when over 20 persons have died, including some prominent citizens,’ the governor stated.
‘Therefore, I want to make a passionate appeal to all Deltans to please realise that the coronavirus disease is real.’
According to him, On Thursday, June 25, Delta State recorded 106 cases, coming only behind Lagos, the epicentre of the pandemic in the country. The latest figure from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) shows that on Friday, June 26, Delta recorded 66 additional cases.
‘This brings the total number of infected persons in the state so far to 781. The local governments mostly affected are Oshimili South (181), Warri South (128), Uvwie (112), Oshimili North (79), Ughelli North (74), Ethiope West (41), and Sapele (66),’ Okowa stated.
He explained that the state government allowed normal business activities to go on in essential sectors of the economy to enable citizens take care of their families, adding that it does not in any way suggest that the danger was over.
‘We made this decision with all sense of responsibility while counting on your partnership with the government to defeat this virus. Regrettably, it does appear our people have not taken this matter as seriously as they should.
‘Our isolation centres are currently overwhelmed with the number of cases, and unless we proactively and collectively take drastic actions to reverse the trend, we stand the risk of becoming another epicentre for the pandemic.
‘In the absence of a specific curative drug, the only way to check the transmission of the virus is for all of us to adhere strictly to the NCDC-issued guidelines and safety protocols,’ the governor noted.