Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom State has said that seven persons have died in the state from COVID-19 since the ravaging virus started in the country.
Emmanuel who made this known on Saturday evening during a routine interactive session with the citizens aired by State-owned Radio and television stations urged the citizens and residents to protect themselves and their families from contracting the virus by complying with the preventive and safety measures put in place.
His words, “Since COVID-19 started in Nigeria, we have lost seven (7) who had tested positive for COVID-19. Unfortunately, almost all of them came for treatment when they were at a helpless point.
“And what we are experiencing nowadays in the state is the high degree of diabetic conditions of people. People don’t check their sugar level. The whole seven people we are reporting today to have died from COVID-19 had terrible diabetic conditions.
“And the 8 pm to 6 am curfew is still in force. By the end of July, we will review the security condition in the State. We needed to manage the COVID-19 situation. It is a challenge, that is why we emphasize that curfew of 8 pm to 6 am”
The governor expressed concern that the level of non-compliance to the safety protocols and guidelines was getting higher instead of the other way around, and once again appealed to citizens and residents for cooperation to fight against the spread of the virus.
He particularly appealed to those doing burials and weddings not to take the set standards for granted stressing, “People are doing weddings, burying their loved ones but people are not following the standards we set for burials and weddings. People are flouting the guidelines and calling the governor a bad name.
“Please cooperate with us. If you must bury your loved one now, please obey the guidelines. We are not doing this because we want to show strength. We are doing this because we care about your life.
”We were thinking that the level of compliance should be getting higher instead it is the level of non-compliance that is getting higher. Please be determined that you don’t want to contact this virus and help reduce pressure on govermment and also on your family members.
“We are at a stage of community transmission, and what that means is that you must protect yourself. At this moment, everything is important. Don’t ignore even a sore throat. Please protect your life, and that of your family members.
“I am glad to inform you that the state has activated the second PCR Laboratory and it is 100 per cent ready. We are only awaiting NCDC certification. So be rest assured that we will soon step up the testings in the state. We won’t wait for people to show symptoms.
“And I want to appeal to our workers to try and be more understanding. This is no time to make unreasonable demands. Let’s try and be more responsible in our actions. This is not the time to run down your state. Others are building their states, we should not destroy ours”
Responding to a question on who succeeds him in 2023, the governor reiterated, “I am not that that kind of Governor that will seek a third term through a surrogate. I am also not that kind of Governor who wants to rule for 24years.
”Thrust me to know that your Governor can only support someone who genuinely has the interest of the state at heart.”