JUST IN: Family finally breaks silence over COVID-19 patient in Kogi, calls for empathy

Arogbonlo Israel

Following the recent fallout between the Kogi State Government and Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) as regards the index cases of COVID-19 earlier reported, one of the families affected has cleared air over the issues surrounding the pandemic in the state.

This was contained in a statement signed, Friday by the Obatebise of Oweland, Chief Tai Ejibunu on behalf of the Ejibunu family in Kabba area of the state.

The statement reads in part;

"Our attention has been drawn to the series of discussions going on, on this Platform concerning Covid-19 index case in Kabba and the identity of the index case. I wish to affirm, on behalf of Ejibunu family, that the Chief Imam of Kabba, Sheikh Ahmad Abubakar Ejibunu, was down with flu some few days back and he had to be hospitalised at the Specialist Hospital in Kabba. Further medical attention was sought at the Federal Medical Centre (FMC) in Lokoja as the flu did not abate after some days," the report confirmed.

"At the FMC, he was referred to the National Hospital in Abuja and the text conducted on him by the NCDC showed that he was Covid-19 positive. The text conducted on one of his sons who had been with him since, came out negative. The family would have come out to speak on the matter, but we were not comfortable with the ding dong game going on between the NCDC and the Kogi State government," the report added.

"The family is concerned about the well being of other Owes and we wish to confirm that Covid-19 has found its way sadly to our community and the State. Therefore, no need for Kogi State government to deny the obvious. We would like to stress that the Chief Imam, of recent, had never ventured outside Kogi State by way of travelling outside the State. So, the 'virus' could have been contacted within. We wish to advise our people to please abide by the protocols emplaced by the NCDC and play safe.

"The family is cooperating with the Kogi State Government and the NCDC to stem the spread. This evening, contact tracing and testing of family members of the Chief Imam had began," the report said.

In his concluding part, the Chief called for empathy from the people of the state, adding there is no need for controversies over the issue at stake.

"What we need from our people is empathy and no need for the acrimonious exchange of views and counter views. May God save Oweland and her people in particular and the state in general," he said.

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