Good people of Ogun State, see highlights of my press briefing on COVID-19 today, 22nd May, 2020 with updates on the lockdown, and response strategies and facilities:
1. We have experienced the highest increase in the number of cases in the last one week since the index case was recorded. While we have discharged a total of 36 cases, we recorded 49 new cases in the last one week (with 37% increase), bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 183. As a testament to the fact that we are set to increase our testing capacity from 450 to 600 per day, the NCDC today arrived the State to certify our Molecular Laboratory in OOUTH, Sagamu.
2. However, having it in mind that confirmed cases keep increasing due to the flagrant disregard for measures and restrictions, especially the interstate travel ban, we will be maintaining the lockdown window on Monday 25th May, 2020, Wednesday 27th, and Friday 29th between 7am (morning) and 5pm (evening). As an instance, 4 people travelling in from Niger State were intercepted by Officers in Abeokuta four days ago, while 19 people travelling in through illegal land borders from Togo and Cote d’Ivoire were intercepted and quarantined at Idiroko on Wednesday. But we have charged 224 lockdown and curfew violators to Mobile Courts already.
3. To enhance our healthcare capacity, we are already renovating select Primary Healthcare Centres (PHCs) across the State, while we have trained 200 personnel with the PHCs and some private health facilities, which would be accredited by the NCDC, on the specialised handling and management of the virus. As we include CDAs and community leaders in the training, about 2,500 participants would eventually be trained. Involving our community leaders would increase sensitisation on curbing community spread.
4. As we prepare for full business operations and further ease of the lockdown which will commence on 1st June, 2020, we have adopted the “See and Treat” protocol, where symptomatic patients would start receiving treatment even before results are out. I am glad to announce that many establishments with large staff bases have begun carrying out COVID-19 tests, and I am hopeful others would follow suit.
5. We will commence the third phase of the relief package distribution over the weekend, to cushion the effects of the COVID-19 restrictions. While this cannot relieve us all due to the restrictions put in place, let’s please be aware that this is the great sacrifice we must all pay to stay alive, as only the human that is alive can pursue their dreams.
6. I congratulate our Muslim brother and sisters, as we look forward to the successful end of the Ramadan Fast. Our Government aligns with the position of the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA), whose Secretary-General, Professor Is-haq Oloyede, is a proud son of our dear State, and enjoin the Muslim faithful in the State to comply with the Council’s directive to offer their Eid prayers at home. May Almighty Allah (SWT) keep us to witness many more years of Ramadan.
7. I appreciate our frontline workers and the entire Ogun State populace for their sacrifices, support and cooperation, including the voluntary humanitarian donations from well-meaning private individuals and organisations.
May we all see the end of the pandemic.