By Victor Ogunje
To avert the spread of the dreadful Covid-19 pandemic, the Ekiti State Government will next week begin random testing of residents across the state.
The government also restated its commitment not to allow security agencies enforcing the lockdown to infringe on the rights of suspected offenders in the state.
The Commissioner for Health, Dr. Mojisola Yaya-Kolade, spoke in Ado Ekiti Wednesday while giving an update on the Covid-19 report in the state.
The commissioner added that all the claims by institutions that they have produced herbal cure for Covid-19 must be scrutinised and made to pass through medical screening before approval.
She said the random testing, which will be done across the 16 local government areas and which must be undertaken in view of the geometric increase in the number of Covid-19 victims, will not be done by coercion, but through sensitisation and volition.
Yaya-Kolade revealed that the state would soon set up a molecular laboratory to boost the state’s testing capacity, so that many people can know their statuses and be aware of their safety .
The commissioner stated that the state presently has only five patients in the isolation centre, which she said are stable, responding to treatment and asymptomatic.
“We are still tracing some contacts and we are expecting our molecular laboratory soon just as we are still preaching prevention and containment through usage of masks and keep to personal hygiene and social financing.
“We will begin random testing next week to stop community spread. The state is doing a lot of infection prevention trainings for our health workers to make our people safe.
“We are also thinking about complying with the new NCDC regulation that you can discharge after first negative testing, if you are overburdened will patients. But we are going to be cautious in applying this.
“Those coming through the borders should stay away. They are not wanted here, because many of the cases we have had were brought from outside,” she said.
Speaking further on the border porosity, the Director General, Office of Strategic Transformation and Delivery, Prof Bolaji Aluko, said the border closure measure becomes the best alternative because the scourge was brought into the state by outsiders.
“Some of them came from Katsina, Lagos and Kano, which had made it imperative for us to secure our border and make us safe.
“We are getting calls that some people are coming from the North, but let our informants provide their lives, so that they can be easily traced for interrogation,” Aluko said.
The Commissioner for Environment, Hon Gbenga Agbeyo, said the state has put up proper machinery to arrest and prosecute violators of the lockdown in Ekiti, particularly those flouting the closure of major markets and border areas.
Agbeyo said another round of fumigation will begin Thursday in the state capital before proceeding to the remaining 15 local governments to disinfect environment and curtail the spread of coronavirus.