Panic swept through Abeokuta, particularly residents and occupants of offices around Simeon Adebo Library, Kuto Annex station of Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) and others near the Kuto branch of the Guaranteed Trust Bank, Abeokuta, when a suspected COVID-19 patient that died was dropped at a point opposite one of the entrances to the bank.
The suspected patient, Alex, was a Beniose national and resident of Ijebu Ode died, Ogun State.
But his supposed friend and travel partner clutched his corpse to himself, seeking help in a video that has been trending.
Alex’s friend claimed in the video the deceased took ill when he returned from Cotonu, Republic of Benin shortly.
He said they were Beniose citizens residing at Ijebu Ode and one officer, perhaps referring to someone in the force, was conveying them from Sagamu to Owode Idiroko, a border town in Ogun State, when his friend died in the car.
He said the officer hurriedly dumped him and his deceased friend beside the road.
The development caused great concerns in Abeokuta as residents of the area were worried of their safety, fearing that people could begin to contract this viral disease if the State Government fails to move in on time to disinfect the area.
When The Nation called the Commissioner for Health, Dr. Tomi Coker, there was no response but Governor Dapo Abiodun, through his aide, Emmanuel Ojo, advised residents of Abeokuta to remain calm.
Abiodun said the Government was already aware of this incident and would surely act responsibly to mitigate its effect.
The Governor’s position is contained in a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on New Media, Emmanuel Ojo.
Ojo said:”This is to reassure the general Ogun State public, especially residents of Abeokuta, to remain calm, as regards the trending video of a Cotonou returnee (male) opposite GTBank, around Simeon Adebo Library, Kuto.
“I have contacted the appropriate authorities, including the Hon. Commissioner for Health, and they are on top of the situation.
“The returnee and the second male with him will be immediately picked up, and the tracing of all their contacts will begin as treatment is given at the closest Isolation Centre in the State.
“Residents around the area are strongly advised to stay indoor and avoid going near the suspected patients”.