Covid-19: Bayelsa Govt Orders Closure of Public Schools, Suspension of Public Gathering More 50 persons
Excerpts of state broadcast by the Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri, on the COVID-19 pandemic on Saturday, March 21, 2020.
I bring you warm felicitations.
I am addressing you today because of the challenge of the COVID-19 pandemic that the world is facing. It has currently spread from Wuhan, China, to almost all countries of the world, including Nigeria.
Over 200,000 confirmed cases and over 8,000 deaths have been recorded globally. There are a dozen and more confirmed cases in Lagos and a few other states. But, I am happy to announce that there is no case of COVID-19 in Bayelsa.
The Bayelsa State Government has since activated its emergency preparedness and response plan to protect Bayelsans and address the challenges associated with the disease.
As a responsive government, we have already set up a multi-sectoral COVID-19 task force charged with the responsibility of coordinating and implementing the state’s response to the pandemic.
The state government has strengthened its level of preparedness through public enlightenment and community engagement, education and training of frontline healthcare workers.
We have also stepped up surveillance and case finding as well as improving isolation facilities at the Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital, Okolobiri, and stockpiling of medical consumables.
To underscore the seriousness attached to preventing the threat of COVID-19, I have with effect from today assumed the chairmanship of the state’s task force and will directly oversee its activities. Local government chairmen have also been mandated to constitute similar task force in their respective councils.
The Bayelsa State government will continue to heighten its preparedness and take proactive steps to protect Bayelsans. Consequently, we have taken the following decisions:
All public and private primary and secondary schools are directed to proceed on vacation with effect from Thursday, March 26, 2020.
All gatherings at religious worship centres, night clubs and public gatherings that are above 50 persons are to be suspended with effect from Monday, March 23, 2020.
Let me restate that as of today, there is no case of COVID-19 in any part of Bayelsa. The general public is advised to eschew rumours, fear and panic.
Bayelsans are further advised to adopt the following protective measures:
Frequent washing of hand with soap under running water or use of alcohol-based hand sanitizers. Let me use this opportunity to inform Bayelsans that our own Niger Delta University now produces hand sanitizers for the use of the public.
Cover your nose and mouth properly with tissue paper when sneezing or coughing and dispose it properly.
Avoid close contact with any person with respiratory symptoms such as coughing and sneezing.
Healthcare workers are advised to observe standard infection prevention measures while caring for patients in our hospitals.
Members of the public can as well call the following numbers to make inquiries or share information about the COVID-19 in the state.
Fellow Bayelsans, I thank you for listening.
God bless Bayelsa State
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.