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Manhunt for fleeing COVID-19 positive driver in Niger State

"6,000 contacts with positive index cases not traceable nationally.

Tunde Bolaji – Minna

Niger state has launched a manhunt of a driver who tested positive of covid 19 according to the state Commissioner of Health and Hospital services, Mohammed Makunsidi, who raised the alarm.
It was learnt that a covid-19 positive driver has escaped from isolation centre where he is being managed in Bida area of the state explaining that the manhunt for the man has intensified.

Makunsidi stated this on Tuesday in a press briefing in Minna adding that officials of his ministry have been deployed to track down the escaped suspect and take him back to Isolation Centre.

He said, “for Bida, we heard of the arrival of a driver or somebody that is said to have tested positive to coronavirus who was being managed at an isolation centre. We heard that he escaped into Bida, so we are after him now. Our members of the state taskforce on covid-19 and officials of ministry of health and hospital services are in Bida area of the state to locate him and make sure he does what the Nigeria Centre for Decease Control has asked him to do”.

He said that two other persons who arrived into Kontagora area of the state from United Kingdom (UK) and Canada have been quarantined where they are undergoing medical tests on the virus because they are from areas of presumed areas of infection.

According to the commissioner, another man from Kagara area of the state has also been taken to isolation centre in Minna due to outcry from his community that he may have come in contact with chines nationals working at zungeru hydro plant even though he has not travelled out of Minna over a year.

He said that the man is having fever and sour throat and that this triggered the fear by the community and the suspicious that he had coronavirus. “ordinarily this does not fit into test definition. But never the less, because of the outcry of the community, we have to take out the man into our isolation centre at Minna general hospital and we are testing him for coronavirus”, he explained.

Also speaking, the Secretary to the State Government (SSG) and Chairman of the state Taskforce on covid-19, Ahmed Ibrahim Matane said his members will redouble efforts at tracing all those believed to have made contact with positive index cases.

He lamented that at the national level, there were still over 6000 people who have made contact with covid-19 positive cases but they cannot still be traced. “these 6,000 have the potential to infect triple that number. In Niger state we have been very prompt and we will not allow such people to mingle with our people”, he said.

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