The government of Lagos state has allowed the Italian who was first diagnosed with coronavirus in Nigeria to leave the Yaba Mainland Hospital where he was quarantined and treated.
Concise News reports that the Governor of Lagos state, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, made this known on his verified Twitter handle late Friday night.
Nigeria’s Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, had announced in late February that the country had recorded its first case of the pandemic.
The Virology Laboratory of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, part of the Laboratory Network of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), confirmed the Italian had coronavirus, according to the minister.
“As the COVID-19 Incident Commander for Lagos State, I am glad to inform you that the index case the Italian gentleman is now negative,” the Lagos governor tweeted Friday, March 20th.
“Through a combined effort of Lagos State, Ogun State and Federal Health Authorities, we were able to limit the transmission of the virus to a single contact.
“This involved aggressive contact tracing and containment strategies. However, we now have several new imported cases and we hope we can apply the same contact tracing strategy along with social distancing to slow down the outbreak which may be brewing from these new cases.”
The governor also said, “The index patient consented to donate one unit of white blood (otherwise called plasma) before he was discharged today (Friday). The blood plasma is rich in antibody proteins that target the #COVID19 virus.
“The white blood plasma is frozen in our Bio-bank and will be useful in handling new cases.
“The blood plasma will be beneficial for the treatment of new patients in the absence of a defined therapeutic drug for #COVID19 yet.”
Nigerian government to citizens: Don’t panic
Earlier this week, President Muhammadu Buhari asked Nigerians not to panic over the rise in coronavirus cases in Nigeria.
The Nigerian leader made the call after Africa’s most populous nation recorded its 12th COVID-19 case, with at least 1,300 contacts being traced.
Buhari, through his media aide, Garba Shehu, said Thursday that the Nigerian government was on top of the situation.
“The Presidency wishes to assure Nigerians that government is on top of the situation. There is no cause for panic. So far measures put in place are working efficiently. What this country is doing has been recommended as a template,” a statement from Shehu read.
“The President trusts the relevant Ministers in his cabinet and the officials of the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), who are providing him with constant updates and professional counsel. These officials have a track record of competence.”
Nigeria bans entry for travelers from 13 countries
Nigeria, on Wednesday, banned entry for travelers from the United States, United Kingdom, China and 10 other countries as it announced five new cases.
The secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, announced the ban at a media briefing.
He said that the ban would take effect on Saturday, March 21, and it would last for four weeks and subject to review.
Other countries affected are Japan, Iran, Switzerland, Norway, the Netherlands, France, South Korea, Germany, Italy and Spain.
The Nigerian government also announced the temporary suspension of all visas issued to citizens from these countries.
“The Federal Government of Nigeria has also suspended the issuance of visa on arrival to travelers from these countries. All travelers returning from these countries prior to the restriction will be in supervised self-isolation, monitored by the NCDC and Port Health Services,” the government said.
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