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‘How Coronavirus caught Nigeria unawares’

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On the day the Senate observed that Nigeria was not prepared for the outbreak of coronavirus, the dreaded virus hit the country, with the confirmed case of an Italian on business trip to Ogun State.

On the floor of the Senate on Thursday, members of the hallowed chamber had argued that contrary to claims by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) that it had put in place preventive measures against the disease.

The Senate President Ahmad Lawan, in justifying the position of senators, noted that while returning from South Africa, there were no deliberate efforts to confirm if those arriving Nigeria were sick and exhibited any coronavirus symptoms.

Lawan stated that it was contrary to what he was made to go through at the airport in South Africa, where for 30 minutes all the passengers were not allowed to alight from the aircraft until they had been screened.

However, before the confirmed case on Thursday, Lagos State government had issued an advisory note, which it followed up with the setting up of an incident command system, with Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu as the Incident Commander.

Thereafter, the state government commenced supervised self-quarantine for Chinese and citizens coming from China and South East Asia.

It also activated the Emergency Operation Centre and the preparatory facilities at the Infectious Disease Hospital, Yaba.

Almost immediately, it issued a health workers advisory and trained health workers aside periodic press briefing for update on the state of the virus around the world to keep residents abreast of development.

This was supported with production of media content to help sensitise the citizens on precautionary measures to take.


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