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Covid-19: Health Experts Call For Shut Down Of Akwa Ibom

A group of Health experts has called on Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom to enforce a partial lock-down policy of the state in order to curb the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The Coalition of Health Professionals in the state expressed dissatisfaction with measures put in place by the state government adding that they were inadequate.

POLITICS NIGERIA gathered that while some states have closed academic institutions and shut down operations in public places, Governor Udom refused to follow suit.

The grievances of the experts were contained in a communique issued by the coalition, comprising of Nigeria Medical Association (NMA), National Association Of Nigerian Nurses and Midwives (NANNM), Akwa Ibom State Branch Chairman.

Others that signed the document are Pharmacy Society Of Nigeria (PSN), Association Of Medical Laboratory Scientists Of Nigeria (AMLSN) at the end of their meeting in Uyo on Wednesday.

The communiqué which was signed by Dr Nsikak Nyoyoko, Chairman NMA; Mr Patrick Odu, Chairman NANNM; Dr Akwaowoh Akpabio, Chairman PSN, and Mrs Emilia Eliezer, Chairman AMLSN urged the State Government to set up Surveillance Screening Posts at all border entry points.

“The Leadership calls on the government to immediately apply a partial lock-down policy in Akwa Ibom . Set up Surveillance Screening Posts at all points of entry (borders) into Akwa Ibom.

“All motorists should fill surveillance forms and be screened at these points. The leadership suggests that all Civil Servants from Grade level 12 and below should be directed to stay at home except for those on essential duty.

“The leadership calls on the government to enforce social distancing by placing a ban on all social gatherings of more than 50 persons in line with the directives of the Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19.

“We appeal to our religious leaders and the general public to cooperate with the government,” the communique stated.

The communique also urged that all entertainment and relaxation spots, clubs, bars should be closed, adding that the NMA would temporarily shut down operations at the Doctors’ Mess.

It also called on the government to immediately create Isolation Centres that should be well equipped.

The communique also demanded that the state government immediately equip the Isolation Centres in IDH, Ikot Ekpene and UUTH with ventilators.

“As healthcare professionals, it is our strong opinion that an Isolation Centre for COVID-19 cannot be said to be fully equipped without ventilators.

“All public officers and private business premises should immediately institute hand hygiene measures and temperature checks at their entry points.

“We call on the government to consult with transport unions and to immediately take proactive measures in ensuring social distancing within the transport operations of Akwa Ibom.

“We call on religious leaders to recognise their roles as opinion leaders and support the government in propagating only correct messages on COVID-19,” the communique stated.

This online medium notes that Nigeria has recorded a total of 46 coronavirus cases, which include President Muhammadu Buhari’s Chief of staff, Abba Kyari and Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed.

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