By Monsuru Olowoopejo
In a bid to flatten the curve of coronavirus in Akwa Ibom State, the Government has declared a total lockdown of the state after recording its first five coronavirus cases.
The State Government added that those allowed to move within the state during the lockdown that takes effect immediately where pharmacies and grocery shops, to prevent residents from falling ill and starving during the two weeks period
Lockdown of the state was declared by the State Governor, Emmanuel Udom, on Thursday, during a broadcast, urging residents to support the government to defeat the deadly disease in Akwa Ibom.
While noting that reports indicate some residents could have had contact with the five cases or have travel history to foreign affected countries where they have contacted the disease, Udom disclosed that the process of contact tracing has begun immediately after the results were released.
To ensure its effectiveness, the governor argued: “All business premises, markets, shops, motor parks, and offices must remain closed during this period.
“To enable this process to be carried out effectively, I am hereby announcing a complete cessation of movement in the State extended to a period of 14 days. There will be no movement of persons, except those on essential duties who must carry a proper means of identification
“The only exception will be pharmacies and grocery shops. All events of any nature are prohibited during this period. The relevant security agencies have been briefed and they will ensure strict compliance with this directive.
“I know that this is a difficult period for all of us as a State. The cessation of movement is for me a very difficult but very necessary decision. I solicit the cooperation and understanding of all of us as we make this sacrifice.
“The disease is not a death sentence and many people around the world and in our own country have recovered from it. We are hopeful that by the grace of God and the work of our healthcare professionals, anybody who has been infected will recover and return to his/her family health,” he added.
The governor, however, appealed to residents that the challenge before the state was not the time for blame game rather a time for everyone to support one another to end the scourge in the state and Nigeria.
“I enjoin all of us to come together so that we can win this battle. This is not the time to panic or spread fear. I am also encouraging every person who may have been potentially exposed to the virus by whatever means, or who is experiencing any of the symptoms of the illness to immediately call the emergency numbers that are already in the public space.