The State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Saka Haruna, today, May 7, in a statement said that as Commissioner, a member of the Federal Hospital Governing Board and the Incident Manager for COVID-19 in the state, he is yet to be informed of any such fatalities.
“There is also a representative of FMC Lokoja in the state’s Squadron committee against COVID-19/Lassa fever and never for once was any such case raised in our meetings.”
He said that the aim of those putting pressure on the state government to declare cases of coronavirus was to politicize the situation as they are not happy that the current administration has been scored high by local and International observers on health.
“First and foremost, it is imperative that the public realise that there is no state government that can deliberately put her people in harms way for whatever political reason, and the current administration has been scored high by local and international observers on Health. We have and will continue to put the health of our people as first priority.
“We are not new to public health emergencies, even if the Covid-19 pandemic is unarguably the most trying the world has ever witnessed.
“We have been in an annual fight against Lassa fever as the state is located in the Lassa fever belt, recording several cases with regrettable loses.
“We were first to establish a biosafety laboratory for Lassa fever in Nigeria and this year alone, we have confirmed 30 cases of Lassa fever, that was duly announced. To accuse the state of a cover-up of Covid-19 cases is mischievous and at best politically inclined.
“Since the beginning of this pandemic, the state has held series of meetings with FMC Lokoja, and this week alone, there have been about four of such meetings. Such claims were never raised by the management of FMC. One then wonders the source and intent of the mischievous report.
“We are more inclined to believe that such fictitious claims being bandied about on the media are just meant to pressure the state into playing to the gallery of a narrative that ensures all states of Nigeria have COVID-19 positive cases.
“We reiterate our earlier resolve not to be pressured into announcing a case of Covid-19, where we have none, irrespective of media propaganda from any quarters.
“We also remain resolute that getting a Covid-19 test result will not be a criterion for Kogites to access quality health care.”