The Ebonyi state Commissioner for Project Monitoring and Evaluation, Chief Oluchukwu Ukie Ezeali, popularly known as P. Noble has commended the efforts of the state governor, Engr. David Umahi, in making sure that the Coronavirus pandemic does not spread to the state as Ebonyi is the only state in the South East yet to record a COVID-19 case.
From the latest report released by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Ebonyi is the only South East state not to record a single case of Coronavirus, with Imo and Anambra recording single cases each, while Abia and Enugu have recorded two cases apiece.
However, in a statement he signed and made available to Blueprint Sunday morning, P. Noble said that the proactive measures undertaken by the governor since the Coronavirus pandemic berthed in Nigeria is worthy of commendation and emulation as it is one of the reasons Ebonyi is yet to record a COVID-19 case in Nigeria.
He said: “The battle against the dreaded COVID-19 pandemic might be far from over, but the efforts of those standing at the frontlines have been nothing but heroic. Surely efforts count for something and that is why the Governors of Lagos state, Edo state and Ebonyi state standout in this wartime.
“It is particularly important to single out Engr David Umahi of Ebonyi state for the urgency with which he responded to this pandemic by immediately shutting down movement from commuters entering the State. He led a border patrol that not only put him in harms way, but also elicited the confidence the people of Ebonyi State to respond in kind, in this fight against COVID-19. When your Governor is at the war-front, a statewide compliance to directives becomes easier to achieve.
“Engr. David Umahi, even before the federal government took a decision, embarked on building proactive, preventive and management capacity to ensure that the devastation is reduced to the barest minimum. He courted the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to immediately activate the Abakaliki Virology Centre, which had long been equipped and handed over to the Federal Government. He built and equipped isolation centres, with the speed of light, to ensure that all suspected cases are quarantined timely.
“On the 2nd of April 2020, Gov. David Umahi signed the Ebonyi state Infectious Diseases (Emergency Prevention) Regulation, 2020 into law. A task force had long been deployed to enforce and ensure compliance with the Stay at Home Order, ban on crowd gatherings, suspension of all wedding and burial activities within the State, ensuring the use of face masks in public places and regulating market activities through use of thermometers, hand-washing facilities and sanitizers to improve the hygiene level of the people of the state.
“These efforts have so far paid off as Ebonyi state is yet to record any case of COVID 19, and it is expected that with the Governor in the trenches and the people of Ebonyi staying vigilante and compliant, the coronavirus will be a different story in the state.
“One might say that these efforts are expected and it is too early to commend. But the scale at which Gov. Umahi has responded to this pandemic has simply birthed a movie script. His doggedness, calculated risks and visionary leadership have shown, once again that the man in Abakaliki Government House is ahead of time.”
Blueprint reports that Ebonyi is one of the eight states and the only state in the South East yet to record any Coronavirus case, with the latest figure released by NCDC standing at 1,182 cases, with 35 deaths and 222 discharged (as of Saturday, April 25, 2020).