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Coronavirus in Nigeria – Lafarge Cement Shut, 28 Persons Quarantined.
Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun, Friday confirmed that Lafarge Cement Nigeria in Ewekoro, Ewekoro Local G Area of the state has been shut down over Coronavirus just as he said a total number of 28 persons had been quarantined.
This was coming as the management team of Lafarge Cement Nigeria confirmed that an Italian, who works with the company and the first index case of Coronavirus in Nigeria, indeed visited the firm’s plant in Ewekoro.
The governor, who spoke in Abeokuta, added that two isolation centres have been identified.
According to him, “The information we have is that the particular company in question has practically shut down and the firm’s management team has set up two isolation centres within the company. The company has identified all those that came in contact with this index case. About 28 persons so far have been quarantined.
“Medical experts are interviewing these 28 persons to know who they have been in contact with, so that those involved can also be quarantined.”
Abiodun explained that surveillance centres have been reactivated in all the 20 local government areas of the state and Olabisi Onabanjo Teaching Hospital in Sagamu in case of an outbreak.
“We are not leaving any stone unturned. We have distributed a lot of precautionary items to our local governments and our primary health care centres, including gloves, masks and protective equipment.
“Ogun State is concerned with the time the sample is sent to the lab, taking about four to eight hours for the feedback, either positive or negative. The transit time from Ogun State to Lagos State could be anywhere between two to four hours. That’s about 12 hours.
“Thus, we have decided that the isolation unit set up at Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital should be upgraded. I am in touch with the Minister of Health, my counterpart in Lagos State and other stakeholders.
“We decided to upgrade our isolation centre to a full-fledge bio-security centre. Ogun State Commissioner for Health will visit Lagos with the aim of working together to immediately upgrade the centre in Sagamu,” he said.
The governor added that the news did not come as a shock because of the proximity Ogun State to Lagos State, where the patient first had an encounter.
“We are the contiguous state to Lagos – the industrial capital of this country. We shouldn’t be shocked that this had happened. Lagos is the gateway of the country. When the investors come in through Lagos airport, the person is most likely coming into one of our industrial hubs or to do business in Ogun State. It’s not surprising that this situation is unfolding ahead of anywhere else in the country,” he added.
Meanwhile, Lafarge Cement in a statement by its spokesperson, Folashade Ambrose-Medebem, said all those who had direct contact with the Italian whose identity was not stated, have been identified.
“The Lagos State Government has reported a first case of n-COVID19 (Coronavirus) in Nigeria. The individual concerned works for a vendor that provides services to Lafarge Africa Plc in Ogun State.
“As a business, we have immediately identified the persons who had direct contact with the concerned individual. We have equally initiated isolation, quarantine and disinfection protocol.
“We thank the exemplary leadership of the Federal Ministry of Health, Ogun and Lagos State Governments for swiftly providing response and testing facilities and we are working in full co-operation with all local authorities. Lafarge Africa is also working in close partnership with International SOS, our medical service provider, a leading global health company.
“Health and safety remains a core value at Lafarge Africa and we intend to leverage this strength at this critical time,” the statement said.
The index case of coronavirus in Nigeria arrived at Murtala Muhammed International Airport via a Turkish Airlines flight on February 24.
The patient is currently being isolated at Lagos State’s bio-security facility in Yaba.