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Okezie Ikpeazu, Bala Mohammed and 2 other governors who have contracted COVID-19

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SINCE Nigeria recorded its index case of coronavirus (COVID-19) disease on February 27, four state governors including Bala Mohammed, Governor of State; Nasir El-Rufai, the governor of Kaduna State, Seyi Makinde, governor of Oyo State and most recently, Okezie Ikpeazu, governor of Abia State, have all contracted the deadly virus which has infected over 7.1 million people globally.

While Mohammed, Makinde and El-Rufai tested positive to the virus in March, Ikpeazu was reportedly diagnosed on Monday after submitting samples for the test on June 4.

This is coming three months after Ikpeazu announced that COVID-19 would not afflict Abia because the state is mentioned in the Bible.

“Abia is the only state that is mentioned in the Bible. We have a promise from God that none of these diseases will touch God’s people. And I hold on to God’s promise.

“We saw Ebola, it did not get to us. We saw monkeypox, it didn’t get to us. Even this one (coronavirus) will also pass us by,” Ikpeazu said with confidence in a Facebook live chat with his chief press secretary, Onyebuchi Ememanka.

According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), COVID-19, which spreads primarily through droplets of saliva or discharge from the nose of an infected person, can have patients displaying mild to severe symptoms. In some other cases, patients suffer a breathing crisis.

The most symptoms of COVID-19  are fever, cough and tiredness.

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Other less common symptoms include; aches and pains, sore throat, diarrhoea, conjunctivitis, headache, loss of taste or smell, rash on skin, or discolouration of fingers or toes.

However, some COVID-19 patients are asymptomatic – displaying no symptoms – like in the case of Makinde, governor of Oyo State, who tested positive to the virus and announced his condition on his official Twitter handle on March 30.

Out of the woods in one week

For Makinde, who has been advocating for local solutions to cure COVID-19, his recovery from the deadly virus was brief.

Barely a week after testing positive, the governor eased the minds of his supporters when he announced that he was fully recovered and free of the virus.

According to the governor, while he lost some weight during the course of living with the virus, he fought and prevailed by using Vitamin C, carrots and black seed oil mixed with honey in boosting his immune system.

“I mix it (black seed oil) with honey and take one teaspoon in the morning and one in the evening. So, there are local solutions to boost immunity. So, our people should not fret. They shouldn’t fret. Just as I have been able to get the virus out of my system, so will it be for the majority of our people,” Makinde rekindled hope in an interview with Isaac Brown of Fresh FM in Ibadan, in April.

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Governor El-Rufai spent 25 days in isolation centre

El-Rufai also disclosed that he had contracted coronavirus on March 28,  and even infected four other persons with the virus, who are now all recovered.

His wife, Hadiza Isma El-Rufai made the announcement first before the governor also confirmed the development.

After spending 25 days in the isolation centre,  El-Rufai announced that he had recovered from the virus on Twitter on April 22.

“I thank Almighty Allah for His grace and mercy. I also acknowledge with gratitude the massive outpouring of sympathy, prayers and public support that followed the disclosure of the infection.

“My family not only went through the trauma of potentially losing a member, but also the risk of being infected as well,” he said.

Shook hands with an infected person

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Three days before El-Rufai disclosure about his status, the governor of Bauchi State, Bala Mohammed had tested positive.

The governor admitted meeting and shaking hands with Mohammed Abubakar, son of former Vice President Atiku Abubakar, who tested positive to the virus on March 22.But after spending 15 days in an isolation ward, the governor announced on April 9 that he had tested negative.

“I just received the green light. My second test for COVID19 returned negative

“I thank you all for your prayers and support even while I was in isolation. Most importantly, all the praises and thanks be to Allah –the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful,” he said in jubilation on Twitter.

The novel coronavirus, described as a respiratory illness has killed over 406,000 persons globally, according to Worldometer.

In Nigeria, the fatality rate of COVID-19 has reached 354, while the number of confirmed cases has hit  12,486.

Author profile

Seun Durojaiye is a journalist with International Center for Investigative Reporting (ICIR).

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1 COMMENT

  1. May Lord Jesus, delivere Nigerians, against Corona virus effects, El rufai from North, seyi makinde from west, now is Ikpe azu from Abia.. God delivere nija

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