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By David Uka, Abakaliki
Governor David Umahi of Ebonyi State has declared seven days fasting and prayers, in the State to seek the face of God for mercy and forgiveness over the outbreak of coronavirus in the country.
Governor Umahi who announced this
in Abakaliki during a live broadcast on
measures taken by the state government to fight the scourge of Lassa- Fever and Convid 19 in the state, said there will be no more gatherings, advising the Christian Association of Nigeria, CAN and other religious bodies, to make use of the state TV and Radio Live telecast to close the prayer daily.
“Our Government has declared 7 days fasting and prayer with effect from 25th March, 2020 to 1st April, 2020 6am to 6pm daily. However, there will be no gathering in doing this but CAN and other religious bodies can use our TV and Radio Live telecast to close the prayer daily. Such gathering at the EBBC premises of the religious leaders must not be more than 50 people. This means that we pray in our homes or work place as the case may be.
“We request all Ebonyians to join our Government and all religious bodies in this State to observe this fasting and prayer as together we seek the face of God for mercy and forgiveness”.
He said as part of the efforts taken by the state government, government has set up medical team to deal with the situation.
The team which has the Chief Medical Director Alex Ekwueme Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki (AE-FETHA) Dr. Emeka Ogar and the state Commissioner for Health Dr Daniel Umezuruike as Secretary and Assistant-Secretary respectively, is headed by the governor.
” I as the Governor of Ebonyi State shall from today 24th March, 2020, be the Coordinator of the medical team put together by our government to arrest the situation. The Chief Medical Director of Dr. Alex Ekwueme Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki (AE-FETHA) and the Commissioner for Health shall be the Secretary and Assistant-Secretary respectively while the Deputy Governor and the Speaker, will be assisting me directly. Other members of the team and phone numbers shall be made available to the public immediately by the Secretary to the State Government “.
“Before the first record of Covid-19 in Nigeria, our government had built two Covid-19 Quarantine Centres in Abakaliki and at our border with Enugu state, at Ishielu Local Government Area”.
” We have closed all Schools, Night Clubs, Sporting activities and from 25th March, 2020, gathering of more than 50 persons other than in the essential service centres such as Markets, Ricemills, Religious Centres, Banks, Hotels, and other essential Service Centres shall be an offence”.
“We have advised all Religious Institutions and all Centres for essential Services as mentioned above to provide nose masks, running water and ensure that every person entering and exiting do wash their hands in a running water and use sanitizers, gaps (distancing) must be created among people within these essential Service Centres. Temperature recorder and breathing technique must be adopted to check all that may use these essential Service Centres. Government shall send medical personnel and security agencies to monitor all essential Service Centres for compliance with effect from 24th May 2020”. He said.
He said any of these Service Centres that fail to observe these measures will be severely punished, including compulsory shut down, penalty and arrest of the Chief Executives of such Centres.
“We have had meetings with Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and the Muslim Community and we have agreed that we shall not shut down religious institutions for now as no case is recorded in South East.
“They must however observe all the precautions and procedures to protect their members and the general public. God forbid, should it become necessary tomorrow to shut down religious institutions, our government shall be bold enough to do so after meeting with religious leaders”.he said
“All parks and public transport must give mask to their passengers and must observe distancing by reducing the number of passengers to create space. Washing of hands and sanitizers and temperature gauge must be deployed at all parks. All tricycle operators must not carry more than 2 passengers at a time and motorcycle operators only one passenger at a time”.
” All passengers to and from Lagos, Edo, Abuja and Southwest must be recorded and submitted to the Ministry of Health on daily basis. Their phone numbers are essential too. This will help our medical team to monitor them”. he said.