The Kwara State governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, has disclosed that the state Technical Committee on COVID-19 is now tracing no fewer than 75 persons who may have contacted the patient who died at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, UITH, Ilorin.
Recall that the UITH Chairman, Medical Advisory Committee, Dr Aisha Saka had disclosed that Prof. Alakija Salami, a specialist in infectious diseases, had brought a 57-year-old, male patient and told the hospital that the patient only had a history of abdominal discomfort/stooling, following the ingestion of rotten pineapples.
According to her, much later, it was discovered that the patient was labeled suspected ‘coronavirus case’.
The Professor has since been suspended.
Addressing newsmen on Tuesday in Ilorin, the governor disclosed that the state government would exercise full sanction on the Professor who aided the treatment of the deceased Coronavirus patient at UITH.
He expressed his administration’s disappointment at the breach of trust that played out in the UITH case.
“Without prejudice to the internal investigation by UITH, we demand the immediate suspension of Prof. Kazeem Salami and every other official of UITH whose professional misconducts brought us down this path pending the outcome of the ongoing probe.
“Yesterday evening, April 6, we received the official report from the NCDC of samples earlier taken to the Ibadan test centre.
“The test confirmed that Kwara State now has two cases of COVID-19. The first is the wife of a man who recently returned from UK.
“The second case is a diabetic patient who also had a travel history to the UK. He came into the country on March 18.
“He has since gone into self-isolation with his wife. Following reasonable suspicion, sample was taken from him and he has now been confirmed positive.
“Our job is cut out for us and we are definitely not dropping the ball. Contact tracing by the Rapid Response Team of the medical advisory committee has so far netted 75 persons who have had contacts with the cases and the suspected case at UITH.
“Fellow Kwarans, this is a trying moment for the whole of mankind. But we are definitely not helpless or without reasonable preparation in Kwara State.
“We are also blessed with committed professionals who are up to the task and willing to stand up and be counted at this time — while also taking all precautions,” the governor said.
He described COVID-19 as “a global pandemic”, adding that contracting it is neither a death sentence nor or an indication of guilt.
The governor urged Kwarans to avoid crowded space, isolate themselves, and call helplines if they have just returned from places of interest in the last three weeks.
Mr AbdulRazaq said his government was extending the ongoing fumigation exercise to places of interest, including the relevant locations in Offa and Ilorin, where contamination may have occurred as a result of this infectious disease.
“Notwithstanding our preparation, we are not ashamed to say that Kwara State will be glad to get all the help it can receive at this moment.
“We commend everyone who has been doing so much in this regard and we call for more,” he said.