Governor Dapo Abiodun of Ogun State said that his administration has spent billions of naira in the fight against the spread of COVID-19 pandemic in the state. However, the governor did not declare the exact amount he has spent in waging the war against the viral disease.
Ogun State has 20 confirmed cases of COVID-19, six of whom have been discharged.
According to Abiodun, the billions of naira were expended on “setting up isolation centres, procuring equipment, sensitization, manpower development, surveillance and other logistics; especially the purchase food items that were distributed across the state to cushion the effects of lockdown on its citizen.”
A statement issued on Wednesday by his Chief Press Secretary, Kunle Somorin, stated that Governor Abiodun disclosed this while receiving the Director-General of the National Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, Chike Ihekweazu, in his Iperu hometown.
The governor explained that the molecular laboratories and other equipment used to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the state were procured through self-help.
Abiodun stated that the state will soon begin the distribution of the first batch of face masks to residents of the state in order to stop community transmission of the virus. He disclosed that the state has procured equipment for drive-through testing in communities to ensure that no stone is left unturned to curb the spread of the disease.
Speaking further, he appealed to the Federal Government to assist the state financially so he can achieve more, asking the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 to pay more attention to Ogun State in the fight against the deadly virus.
On the restriction order, Governor Abiodun said the lockdown has not been total in Ogun State, maintaining that this is so because of the peculiar situation of the state concerning the low disposable income of the people.
He said many of the residents are largely living on daily income, unlike those in Lagos State and the Federal Capital Territory. “We have had to manage the delicate balance between the people’s welfare and public safety. So far, we are on top to ensure that community transmission is put under control,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has commended Abiodun and the COVID-19 team in the state for measures put in place to fight the spread of the pandemic.
The Director-General, NCDC, Dr Chike Ihekweazu, after inspecting the first state-funded molecular laboratory at the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, Sagamu and the 128-bed COVID-19 Isolation and Treatment Centre at Ikenne, lauded the leadership of the State for giving direction to other states on how to deal with the Coronavirus pandemic.