The Bayelsa State Governor, Senator Douye Diri has ordered the immediate closure of all public and private primary and secondary schools and the restriction of all gatherings at religious worship centres, night clubs and public gatherings that are above 50 persons in the state.
According to Governor Diri, the private and public school are to proceed on vacation with effect from Thursday, March 26, 2020 and the suspension of public gathering of persons above 50 will take effect from Monday, March 23, 2020.
Governor Douye Diri,who made this known yesterday in a statewide broadcast monitored on Radio Stations in the state, declared that despite the fact that over 200,000 confirmed cases and over 8,000 deaths have been recorded globally with 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.”
He further noted that the Bayelsa State Government has since activated its emergency preparedness and response plan to protect people and address the challenges associated with the Virus .
Governor Diri emphasized that “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.
“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. 08039216821, 0701930497008151693570”.
Meanwhile, the Governorship flagbearer of the All Progressive Congress (APC) in the state, Chief David Lyon visited the state capital, Yenagoa and his country home in Olugbobiri community of Southern Ijaw Local Government area of the State, urging supporters and indigenes of the state to be conscious of the Corona virus pandemic ravaging people around the world and urged them to take precautionary measures as advised by health care practitioners.
He commended the Federal government for the bold initiatives to urgently take drastic measures in mitigating the spread of the Corona virus in the country and emphasized the need to initiate rapid test centres at designated port of entry into the country through the state.
Chief David lyon, who noted that the visit to Bayelsa was his first after the unfortunate February 13th verdict of the Supreme Court nullifying his governorship mandate, expressed appreciation to the people of bayelsa state for their show of support and solidarity long after the supreme court judgement that denied him his electoral mandate.
Lyon said he was overwhelmed by the love and concerns shown by Bayelsans over the unfortunate supreme court judgement and urged them to remain calm and law abiding even in the face of provocative comment and statements in the media by mischief makers to heat up the polity in the state.
He encouraged them to be supportive of one another in view of the prevailing harsh economic conditions in the country emphasizing that a collective spirit will continue to keep bonds of oneness alive.
He also used the opportunity to appreciate those who have been relentlessly organizing prayer sessions in the face of the prevailing political disadvantage suffered by supporters of the party, and urged party faithfuls to be steadfast in their endeavours.