MATTER OF URGENT PUBLIC IMPORTANCE
THE NEED TO COMMEND HIS EXCELLENCY, ALH. YAHAYA BELLO, FOR HIS PROACTIVE APPROACH IN PREVENTING THE SPREAD OF CORONA VIRUS PANDEMIC IN THE STATE
Kogi State is one of the two States in the Federation that has not recorded any case of infection from the strain of corona virus disease since the outbreak of the pandemic in the country.
The Rt. Hon. Speaker, distinguished honourable colleagues, you may recall that the first case of corona virus disease which originated in Wuhan, China 2019 (hence Covid-19), and which has spread across the globe like the harmattan fire, was confirmed on the 27th day of February 2020 in Nigeria. The index case was an Italian national in Nigeria.
Between the date the first case was confirmed and today, being, Thursday, the 7th day of May 2020, a total number of 21,208 samples were tested in Nigeria. From these samples, a total number of 3,145 cases of Covid-19 were confirmed and the individuals infected isolated for treatment but, importantly, to avoid spread through contact. 2,508 of the confirmed cases are active.
Regrettably, The Rt. Hon. Speaker, distinguished honourable colleagues, out of these numbers of confirmed cases, 103 deaths were recorded across the country with a gladdening number of 534 discharged cases.
Whereas, Kogi State is bounded by 9 States of the Federation and the Federal Capital Territory. All our abutting territories have various numbers of cases confirmed, deaths from the virus recorded and discharged made of individuals who have survived the disease.
While it is a fact that the great people of Kogi State have shown admirable resilience and a strong sense of responsibility in complying with government directives since the index case of Covid-19 pandemic was reported in Nigeria, it must be, however, acknowledged that the government of Alh. Yahaya Bello has shown leadership and took proactive measures to contain the spread in the State. The Kogi State Government accordingly developed and deployed effective measures which among others include:
1. Sensitization of the people in all languages and locations throughout the State about the dangers of the corona virus and on the need to observe the recommended personal, environmental and respiratory hygiene protocols as recommended by both international and national regulatory authorities. Health personnel were also deployed to all the 239 Wards of the State to help sensitize the people and also in contact tracing.
2. Adhering strictly to the various guidelines and directives of the Federal Government as well as the spectrum of criteria set by the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) for actual or suspected Covid-19 cases requiring testing.
3. Inauguration of a Covid-19 and Lassa Fever Squadron Committee chaired by the Deputy Governor to tackle every necessary measure in keeping the virus outside the limit of the State and in mobilizing men and resources to ensure containment. The Committee, for effectiveness, is overseen by the Governor himself.
4. Introduction of controlled lockdown procedures for social distancing by shutting down schools, places of worship and events with mass gatherings, and sent state workers on Grade Levels 1 to 13 on paid temporary leave of absence.
5. Emergency and toll free numbers were provided for anyone who suspects a case of Covid-19 to call in for a ready team to respond.
6. Certain means of public transportation like motorcycles and tricycles which were veritable means of increasing exposure to the virus were banned.
7. 3 Isolation centres were set up by the State Government, while the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) was invited for validation of the Gene-Xpert and PCR Machines for Covid-19 testing.
8. The State launched risk assessment app to ascertain the level of risk of indigenes. As a matter of fact, the Rt. Hon. Speaker, distinguished honourable colleagues, the updates on the number of confirmed cases, deaths and discharged cases as well as number of cases in each of the federating units are daily provided by the app. Also, the State became a pacesetter as other states like Kano, Lagos and even the FGN launched similar app.
9. The State set up GPS Tracking/Control Centre for case monitoring.
10. The Government also donated hand sanitizers, hand washing containers to public places.
11. Health workers are continuously trained and retrained to update their knowledge and skills in handling Covid-19 cases.
12. The State Government respectively procured PPEs and other medical consumables; medical equipment like Infrared Thermometers, Multi-channel Patient Monitors; and Automated Laboratory Equipment among others.
Aware that His Excellency, Alh. Yahaya Bello and his team are taking seriously their responsibilities and duties as committed leaders to safeguard the people of Kogi State from all threats to their health and from all diseases, including Covid-19, Lassa Fever and other ailments, I am convinced with more encouragement that His Excellency, Alh. Yahaya Bello and his team will do more.
Be it, therefore, resolved as follows:
1. That a strongly worded Resolution of this august Assembly be conveyed to the State Government commending His Excellency, Alh. Yahaya Bello, the Executive Governor of the State for sustaining efforts in preventing Covid-19 spread in Kogi State, for his commitment to protecting the people of the State from all diseases, and for rising gallantly in defence of the people at this trying time of global health concerns.
2. That similar letter of commendation be conveyed to the State Covid-19 Squadron Committee headed by the Deputy Governor, His Excellency, Chief Edward Onoja for the Committee’s hard work in preventing the spread of the virus in the State and to encourage the Committee to follow painstakingly all the NCDC and World Health Organization (WHO) Covid-19 advisories,
I so move.
Dated today, the ………………… day of …………………………… 2020.
Hon. Mukhtar Bajeh,
The House Whip and Member representing Okehi State Constituency.