Abia State finally confirms first two COVID-19 cases in Nigeria

Following the ongoing cases of the ravaging coronavirus which has precipitated a lot of panic among the people and the World in general, here in Nigeria, the first case of the pandemic was reported in Lagos State on February 27, 2020 when an Italian citizen tested positive. Lagos state is one of the biggest and popular cities in Africa and currently holds the highest number of cases in the country. Report from Nigeria Center of Disease Control (NCDC) on April 20, 2020 shows that 38 new cases were confirmed from 8 states in which Abia State recorded her first two cases. The total statistics as follows: 665 confirmed cases, 188 discharged and 22 deaths.

Chief John Okiyi Kalu

The Abia State government through the commissioner for Information, Chief John Okiyi Kalu on Monday, April 20 disclosed that the State has confirmed the first two cases of the COVID-19 pandemic after results of the two patients who were tested turned out to be positive. The statement was made available by Nigeria Agency of News (NAN) in the state capital, Umuahia. His words:

“We have received a report this evening from NCDC confirming two cases of COVID-19 in Abia State. The two patients have advanced in age, but currently staying at an isolation center in the state. Our ventilators have been deployed to isolation center and available for use if required to nurse them back to good health. Our well trained medical practitioners have come to offer necessary support and we hope and pray the patients recover from the disease.”

Chief John Okiyi also mentioned that since the patients are aged, the possibility of spreading the virus to their various communities, Ukwa and Umuahia North areas of the state is very high.  He also pleaded that any person who must have come in contact with the patients should endeavor to call the state medical emergency phone numbers for immediate medical attention. Furthermore, he stated that the state has commenced serious contact tracing of the two index cases through Abia State COVID-19 Response Team and they are currently searching to bring those who must have come in contact with the contracted patients. He also advised the people of Abia State to remain calm and continue exercising the guidelines of COVID-19 issued by NCDC and the state Inter-Ministerial Committee. He also reminded them on some of the guidelines which include staying at home, observing social distancing, avoiding crowded areas as well as putting on face mask when necessary.

The commissioner while speaking in a related issue said that the test result of the previously suspected individual in the person of ‘Prosper Vincent’ who was declared wanted by the state government has turned out to be negative and would be released any moment from isolation. The so called Vincent Prosper happens to suspect that he was manifesting the symptoms of the virus and called the Nigeria Center of Disease Control from the state. Meanwhile, he disappeared into thin air out of fear when the state COVID-19 Response Team came looking for him but was finally apprehended with the help of some security agents who stormed his location and took him into custody in the state isolation facility.

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