By Dave Okpogadie, Asaba
Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, director general, Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) has commended Delta State government on its efforts to contain the coronavirus in the state.
The DG, said they were in the state to get firsthand information on the activities and challenges of the Delta State Emergency Operation Committee with a view to giving technical support to help address them. He noted that the ability of the state to record such few cases was due to its deliberate but concerted efforts and urged the state to keep it up.
Dr Ihekweazu was accompanied by Dr. Fiona Braka Fiona, officer in charge, World Health Organization (WHO), Nigeria Country Office.
Earlier, the Delta commissioner for Health, Dr Mordi Ononye, in his address, welcomed the director general and his entourage and appreciated NCDC and WHO for their technical and other assistance to the state so far.
After a closed door meeting, the team embarked on a field visit to the COVID-19 holding and treatment centers at the Federal Medical Center and Asaba Specialist Hospital both in Asaba.
Speaking with members of the press after the facility-tour, Dr Ihekweazu stressed that the role of NCDC is to encourage and support states on their preparedness to curb the spread of the virus.
He said the role of NCDC is to serve the whole country, help prepare for the worst and at the same time, hope for the best.
On the case of every state being potentially affected, the NCDC boss said, “Borders are drawn for political reasons in order to provide governance for people and bacteria and viruses don’t recognize such.”
On her part, Dr Fiona Braka, officer in charge, WHO, Country Office, Nigeria appealed to Deltans to remain vigilant stressing that the risks were still very high.
In her words, “We are here to ensure that what is recommended globally, we contextualize to the country level looking at capacities and risks and scale up this process in a manner that the capacity in the country can manage.
“Working with NCDC to see how we can ramp up this process, certainly Delta will be among those states that will be critically looked up for testing capacity.”