Cephas Iorhemen, Makurdi
Palpable fear and panic gripped the Benue State Government House Saturday after it emerged that the wife of the Governor, Mrs. Eunice Erdoo Ortom, her son and some staff of her office have tested positive for COVID-19.
The governor’s wife’s COVID-19 status came days after widespread reports that the governor himself had tested positive for the disease and had stopped making public appearances.
But Ortom, on Wednesday, presided over the state’s Executive Council meeting where he announced the partial reopening of schools for primary Six, JSS3 and SS3 classes.
This is just as his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Terver Akase, swiftly dispelled the allegation against the governor as untrue.
But barely three days after, wife of the governor, in a statement she personally signed and sent to New Telegraph by her Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Shimataver Aondoakaa, said when result from her tests carried out by medical experts from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) returned positive, she immediately went into total isolation as required by the protocols and has began treatment.
She adviced any one who has had close contact with her in the last two weeks and the public to go for screening and testing.
Mrs. Ortom said: “I received my result from the tests earlier carried out on me by NCDC personels on routine screening at Government House, Makurdi which indicated that I and my son, and some staff are COVID-19 positive.
“We have from this moment, gone into total isolation as required by the protocols and would immediately begin the management treatment as adviced by medical experts.
“While I have taken the responsibility to personally call every one I can recall to have had recent contact with to go for testing, I advice any one who has had close contact with me in the last two weeks and the public to go for screening and testing.
“I wish to reiterate that been COVID-19 positive is not a death sentence as evident by the many recoveries recorded thus far so there is no need to panic, but we should continue to be responsible in our actions so as to keep others safe.
“I am encouraging people to take preventive measures to be protected and be safe by observing the primary protocols which are: wearing of face masks, constant washing of hands, maintaining social distancing and stay indoors if not necessary to go out.”