The Senior Special Assistant to the Governor of Delta State on Health Monitoring, Dr Michael Nwoko has identified noncompliance to Covid-19 preventive and safety protocols by the people as spelt out by the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, as a major hindrance to the efforts of Government towards containing the spread of the pandemic in the State and Nigeria as a whole.
He reiterated the urgent need for stringent measures to be taken with a view to enforcing compliance, saying that the Health system activated to deal with the crisis could be overwhelmed if something drastic is not done.
Speaking in an interview with selected Journalists on Thursday 9th, 2020 in his office at Asaba, Dr, Nwoko who is a member of the State Covid-19 Enforcement Committee, said that the Delta State Government is all out to enforce compliance with preventive protocols to the benefit of the well-being of the entire resident of the State
“Of course you know very well that compliance with NCDC protocols is the best way to go in order to guarantee the safety of the people from the pandemic and presently, enforcement of compliance is key to stem the spikes.
“The enforcement will be at every level of government. Enforcement at the local government level must be driven through the local government authorities in collaboration with the traditional institutions so as to reach out to the people on the need to adjust their belief system because it is very difficult for you to convinced people who do not believe that COVID-19 is real.
“As stated by the Hon. Commissioner for information on Wednesday, Government is going to take stringent measures to enforce compliance to NCDC safety protocols throughout the State. This responsibility rests heavily on local government authorities as well as traditional institutions who must ensure that everybody in their various communities comply with the safety protocols.
“Suffice to say that preponderance of those who do not believe COVID-19 is real are the rural dwellers. If you visit the markets, you will see people going about their businesses without face masks and many do not observe social distancing. This is very dangerous and largely responsible for the rise in infectious rate.
“The State which currently has a total of 1,323 confirmed cases with 838 active cases and 454 discharge cases with an average of 60% of bed capacity utilized, has thus far recorded huge success in its response to COVID-19 and this is on account of the unrelenting efforts and coordinating ability of His Excellency, Sen. Dr. Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa, the Governor of Delta.
“The issue of whether asymptomatic carriers can transmit this virus is another debate that has been on. The truth is that we are dealing with a novel coronavirus disease, which people have very limited knowledge about. Much is not known as to the behavior of the virus both outside and within the human host. Science has proven that it is transmitted through droplets that can travel from one person to another and it can also remain in the air for some hours. So the best thing is for everyone to comply with the preventive protocols.
“We must adjust our lifestyle and our belief system. We must understand that asymptotic carriers are out there in our midst. They are more dangerous than the confirmed cases because they make contact with people on a daily basis and releases aerosols to the environment.
“Our people should not claim ignorance at this point in time, ignorance at this time is a disaster. Those who have symptoms such as fever, sore throat, loss of smell and dry cough should make themselves available for testing, He stressed.
By Frank Iroroh