By Segun Awofadeji
Gombe State Governor, Alhaji Muhammad Inuwa Yahaya has ordered civil servants from grade levels 9 to 12 to join their senior counterparts at work beginning Monday 25th May, 2020.
The Governor who reviewed some of his directives in containing COVID-19 in a State wide broadcast yesterday, also announced the lifting of the ban on congregational worship for Christians and Muslims in the State, effective this yesterday.
The review of the measures may not be unconnected to what he described as positive results from the strategies employed to manage the pandemic in the State.
According to him, “Government has resolved to gradually ease the restrictions in our dear state by re-opening places of worship but with strict adherence and compliance to the following guidelines.
“Strict observance of social distancing; compulsory wearing of face masks; regular hand washing with soap and water and limiting the number of persons in each congregation to not more than 20-50 persons depending on the size of the worship centre.”
He stated, however, that he would not hesitate to revert to the previous order or to take more drastic measures should the need arise.
According to him, State closure of border entry points, closure of schools, ban on all social and cultural gatherings, stay at home order for civil servants below grade level nine, suspension of activities of commercial motorcycles and the imposition of an overnight curfew throughout the state were still in force.
The Governor noted that “on the medical front, our case management strategy is yielding encouraging results. So far a total of 1272 samples were collected and sent for testing, out of which 124 turned out positive and were all isolated and managed according to the guidelines issued by the NCDC. Eighty-six of the confirmed cases have so far fully recovered and were discharged with only 1 death recorded in the state.
“Currently, there are 36 active cases in our state. As evidenced by these statistics, Gombe State is recognised by the NCDC as one of the states in the country that is effectively and efficiently managing this pandemic in accordance with international best practices,” Governor Inuwa said.
The Governor also stated that while his administration shall continue to keep in mind the economic and social impact of enforced restrictions on the health and well-being of the people, adding, “we shall embark on the distribution of our palliative package which is targeting to reach 30 most vulnerable households in all the 2,218 polling units across the entire state which translates to about 66,000 households or 400,000 individuals.”