Abia State Governor Okezie Ikpeazu, has been receiving treatment in Abuja, after he tested positive for COVID-19.
The governor who had been managing the sickness, only formally disclosed his status on Sunday, days after he had undergone series of tests to confirm and reconfirm his status.
But findings revealed that the governor, who had been troubled over the demise of his childhood friend and close associate, the Commissioner for Environment, Solomon Ogunji, who passed away Saturday, May 23, flew in to Abuja, where he had been treating the disease since last week.
An official report from Abia State government had indicated that Ogunji, said to be having high blood pressure, died after a brief illness, but findings showed that he could have died from COVID-19 complications.
Hence, to immediately arrest his health challenges, it was gathered the governor had to relocate from the presidential lodge of Umuahia government house to the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, for proper medical attention.
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However, the state commissioner for information, Chief John Okiyi, who, in Umuahia, formally confirmed Ikpeazu’s status, in a statement, on Sunday, said, Governor Ikpeazu had subsequently gone into self-isolation.
According to Okiyi, “the positive result came from a second sample test on the governor for COVID-19 by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).”
He stated that the result of Ikpeazu’s first test by NCDC on May 30 returned negative and that the result of the second test of the sample submitted on June 4 “for confirmation” came out positive.
The NCDC, had, in a report on Sunday, said Abia now has 67 new cases of the virus, bringing the total number to 85.
“Recall that on Saturday, May 30, Ikpeazu volunteered his sample for COVID-19 test and subsequently directed members of the state Executive Council and those of the inter-ministerial committee on COVID-19 to submit themselves for the same test.
“On Thursday, June 4, the governor submitted another sample at the NCDC laboratory for confirmation and the result returned positive.
“As a result, Ikpeazu has gone into isolation as required by the relevant NCDC protocols.
“The governor is being managed by a competent team of medical practitioners with a view to nursing him back to good health,” Okiyi said.
He said that the governor had, therefore, directed his Deputy, Ude Oko-Chukwu, “to act on his behalf, pending his full resumption of duties.”
“We wish to urge all Abia residents to take the fight against COVID-19 seriously. The disease is real but not a death sentence.
“Our state has the resources to manage patients back to good health,” the commissioner stated.