Governor Ikpeazu Wants More COVID-19 Testing, Says Stigmatisation Of Infected Persons Discouraging Others

The Governor of Abia State, Dr Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, has called for a new phase of increased testing for COVID-19 to reach 10 per cent of the population in the state, saying stigmatization of those who have contracted the virus is contributing to the hesitancy by people to test.

In a release, the governor said: “we cannot win and save lives as long as we continue to stigmatize our patients. If any person gets COVID-19 it is unfortunate, but it is not criminal and may not be his/her fault.”

To address challenges with population density and testing in Abia State, the state epidemiologist will “work out modalities for case searches using sample population size of between 30 to 250 persons,” he said.

The governor noted that two of his aides were confirmed positive for COVID-19 but that he and other members of his family and the rest of his staff received negative results on May 30.

Previously, Ikpeazu directed members of the State of Executive Council to take tests for COVID-19.

He has also directed Local Government Council Transition Committee chairmen of the 17 local government areas of the state to test for COVID-19 and self-isolate until they received their test results.

As cases rise, Ikpeazu urged Nigerians from Abia State to take the spread of COVID-19 serious.

“I encourage all citizens and residents to get involved in the battle against COVID-19 rather than engage in rumour mongering. Take responsibility because Abia is very ready to combat COViD-19, God helping us.”

Abia State has recorded 15 cases of COVID-19 out whom seven have recovered and no death recorded.

On June 2, Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) reported 241 new confirmed cases and 15 deaths, now totalling 10,819 confirmed cases.

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