COVID-19: Borno Confirms 9 Deaths, 53 Cases Out of 233 Followed Up Contacts Thursday

By Sadiq Abubakar, The Nigerian Voice, Maiduguri

Borno State Commissioner of Health who is also the Secretary of the state High Powered Response Committee on Prevention and Control of COVID-19 in Borno dtate, Dr. Aliyu Salisu Kwaya Bura on Wednesday disclosed that 3 more deaths have been recorded between Tuesday and Wednesday before the daily media update on covid-19 press briefing with journalists at the multi purpoae hall of the Government House Maiduguri

He added that out of the 233 individual contacts that were followed up by the committee, 53 cases informed the need for the committee to increase the number of surveillance teams, more isolation centres and more testing centres to be set up.

The commissioner further stated that 11 new cases have been reported. Presently, the ECR machine at Umoru Shehu Memorial hospital has the capacity of carrying out 500 tests in a day but plans are on to utilize the Micro-Biology Department of the University of Maiduguri for an additional test centre to increase the capacity to 1,000 tests per day.

Dr. Kwaya Bura said that he was constrained by the guiding rules of his profession as a medical doctor not to disclosed the cause of death of his patients.

"Therefore, I can not disclose or tell the public or Journalists whether HRH, Late Shehu of Dikwa and the late BOSHA member resenting Nganzai LGC Constituency that died two days ago were as a result of COVID-19 or not. But they have died and investigation is still on going",."Aliyu said.

On issue of having smooth and cordial working relationship with the press and relating facts and accurate figures from the committee during update, the Secretary of the committee pledged to ensure cordial working relationship and giving out facts without any hidden agenda.

He however promised to follow up issues regarding reciept of patients by the UMTH officials on calls as well as delay in responding to calls by the surveillance teams especially, at late hours or early in the morning.

On his part, the State Commissioner of Informatiion and Home Affairs, Babakura Abba Jato said the committee went round the city to minitor the situation on ground and discovered that some residents were sitting in groups outside their houses or at majalisa without observing the social distancing.

He added that some were holding congregational prayers in front of their houses and at mosques in neighborhoods, poi nting out that Governemnts is watching them and secuirty agents will be be deployed to ensure compliance.

The commissioner disclosed also that three Chief imams were put on suspension presently for violating Governemnt's order last Friday and warned those doing same or have intention of doing same to better stop before they are arrested and handed over to the appropriate authorities for disciplinary action.

He also urged the people when coming out on Thursday to the markets, to put on their face masks and wash their hands at entry and exit points to avoid spreading the disease.

Abba Jato further called on the people to maintain social distancing and avoid social gathering in the interest of others and living a better and healthy life.