Alhaji Umar Usman Kadafur, Deputy Governor of Borno State, the epicentre of Boko Haram/Islamic State in West Africa Province (ISWAP) in Nigeria, on Sunday said that residents of the State still doubt the existence of Coronavirus (COVID-19) the same way they dismissed Boko Haram activities when it initially started some years ago.
Kadafur who is the chairman of the State’s COVID-19 Response Team for the prevention and control of the pandemic, said at the daily Media Update on the pandemic held at the Goverment House, Maiduguri that despite the increasing rate of spread of the virus, it is rather unfortunate that lots of people participated in burial ceremonies and observed congregational prayers against the rules of social distancing.
“When Boko Haram started, a lot people felt it was something not to be taken seriously until when it consumed everybody. This COVID-19 is another Boko Haram coming. And yet, people don’t believe it’s real. I keep saying it’s real. As a response team, we’ll continue telling the general public and reaching out with advocacy,” Kadafur said
Meanwhile, the State Commissioner of Health, Dr. Salisu Kwayabura, revealed that in the last 48 hours, 16 Medical health workers have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic in the State.
He also advised residents to maintain the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) guidelines of hand washing, personal hygiene, social distancing and avoid large gatherings to prevent the spread of the deadly virus.
Dr. Kwayabura further urged the residents to wear face masks when leaving their homes, and wash their hands when they return.
Borno State currently has 75 confirmed cases of COVID19.