COVID-19 lockdown: Kano state government has extended the lockdown imposed in the state by one week to help further contain the spread of the novel COVID-19 pandemic.
The state commissioner for information, Malam Muhammad Garba, who made the announcement said the decision was reached after due consultations with the federal government and key stakeholders in the health sector.
He said the measure is aimed at further reducing indiscriminate person to person contacts which is considered as one of the major ways the disease is being spread.
Recall Kano state has been the epicenter of a rising wave of strange mass deaths that have been reported throughtout the state.
The first cases of reported mass death was early April when the Daily Trust newspaper reported what it called the “mysterious” recent deaths of around 150 people in Kano city.
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Recently, A medical doctor based in Kano, has alleged that the death toll in Kano state has risen to 640 after a strange disease allegedly hit the Northern state.
The head of the COVID-19 task force, Sani Aliyu, said a government team was collating “verbal autopsies” of the deaths to determine whether the deaths were linked to the epidemic.
The local governments affected so far are Kano, Nasarawa, Gwale, Dala, Ungogo, Fagge, Tarauni, Kumbotso and Municipal.
“We don’t have a true baseline when it comes to the number of deaths. It’s something we need to investigate quite closely,” he said during a briefing with the World Health Organization. “It may not necessarily be COVID.”
Another mysterious happening in Kano State was the reported deaths of over 23 high-profile deaths occurring within 24 hours due to reasons yet to be known.
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The State Government had constituted an investigative panel to determine the causes of these and other recent deaths.
One of the high-profile deaths includes that of Ibrahim Ayagi, Kano-based professor of economics, a former head of the Nigerian Economic Intelligence Bureau, and until his death was the chief executive officer of Hassan Gwarzo Group of Schools. Ayagi was aged 80 years. Other notable deaths in the state are of the former Grand Kadi of Kano, Dahiru Khadi, Musa Umar Gwarzo, as well as Musa Tijjani, editor of the state-owned Triumph Newspaper.
These occurrences happened amid the stoppage of the COVID-19 tests which was suspended by the NCDC to enable it to fumigate the testing centers.
Other VIPs who have died within the period include Adamu Isyaku Dal, former executive secretary, SUBEB; Salisu Lado, Nene Umma, Garba Sarki Fagge, and the mother of a renowned businessman, Ado Gwanja.
The list of the dead also includes Aliyu Umar Dikko, a professor in the Department of Physiology, Bayero University, Kano, and Nasiru Maikano Bichi, secretary, Students Affairs, North West University, Kano.
Although there are no confirmed connections with the mounting deaths being recorded in the state to the ravaging COVID -19, the death rate in the state is alarming.
However, the state Governor Abdullahi Umar Ganduje has dismissed the reports of the mass death in the state as a rumor. He added that the figure reported from cemeteries and graveyards did not reflect what was reported in the media.
“On April 19 to date, we found that there were only three deaths in Gwale Local Government Area, From Kano Municipal we found that there were seven deaths and from Kumbotso, we found that there were only three deaths recorded.
The commissioner, while acknowledging the consequences of the measure on the public, called for patience and support as the battle against the pandemic continues.
He also called on the people to continue to observe strict personal hygiene through regular hand washing, use of face masks and social distancing.