Uche Okafor, Speaker of Anambra State House of Assembly, Southeast Nigeria says all members of the assembly have undertaken compulsory test for COVID-19 in order to ascertain their status.
The State Ministry of Health carried out the mandatory COVID-19 tests for members and staff on the directive of the speaker.
Okafor stated in an interview that the test was to ascertain health status of the lawmakers and also part of the effort to spread awareness of COVID-19 second wave which was spreading at an alarming rate across the state.
HumAngle reports that Anambra has 3.78 per cent COVID-19 infection rate with a total of 565 confirmed cases from 14, 989 tests.
As of Wednesday, Jan. 20, the state has successfully treated 500 patients and recorded 50 news cases.
The speaker enjoined every citizen of Anambra to make themselves available for testing as a matter of urgent public health importance.
According to him, the tests became necessary in order to ensure that none of the members and workers was infected by the virus.
“This exercise is to show to our people that there is no harm in going for COVID-19 tests because it is very important to know your status and take necessary steps to stay safe and be alive,” he said.
“The government is investing a lot to contain the spread of the disease in the state and we need to support the government’s efforts by adhering to the health guidelines.”
Dr Vincent Okpala, Commissioner for Health in Anambra said early testing for COVID-19 was key to early detection and increased chances of survival.
Okpala noted that the number of COVID-19 positive cases had gone up since the beginning of the second wave, compared to the first wave, when the state recorded one of the least numbers of positive cases.
He commended the legislators for showing leadership by wearing their facemasks and observing physical distancing while urging them to take the awareness campaigns to their respective constituencies.
“We are glad that we have built a system to deal with this pandemic but what we don’t want is to overwhelm the system.”
“This is why we have increased our ability at getting people tested on a daily basis and we have deepened sensitisation across the state, urging people to go for tests, when they feel the signs and symptoms of this disease.”
Nigeria expects to receive its first doses of a COVID-19 vaccine very soon and Osagie Ehanire, Minister of Health said the country has a working group in place to handle vaccines, and is working with the COVAX programme backed by the World Health Organization (WHO).
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