Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike has threatened to shut down the operations of commercial vehicles in the state over failure to observe social distancing. Governor Wike said this during a live broadcast briefing on the state of COVID-nineteen in the state.
The Governor said the next 24 hours will determine the fate of commercial drivers in the state after meeting with the state security council in the state, as he assured that Government buses are already on standby to serve as alternative. He also announced that henceforth, the use of face mask in public places is now compulsory. Governor Wike also threatened to shut down the Wednesday Oil Mill market completely if residents in Rumukwurushi continue to flout the directives by the state government, and also threatened to totally lockdown Rumuokoro and Elimgbu over mini and night markets.
“The State’s Security Council will meet in the next 48 hours to consider and approve necessary mitigating measures for commuters, including the deployment of Government buses to shuttle designated public routes free of charge during the period of the ban on commercial transport operations.
“Finally, community leaders and residents in Rumuokoro, Elimgbu and Rumuokurushi are hereby warned for the last time to either comply with our directives on social distancing and desist all business activities, including night markets or risk a total lockdown in these areas and the permanent closure of the Rumuokoro (Oil mill) market”.
Governor Wike also accused security agencies as the reason for the number of increased cases of COVID-nineteen in the state, as he said the seventh case in the state is an offshore worker who snuck his way into the state with the aid of security personnels. “For instance, the 7th infected case was an offshore oil and gas worker who went and passed a night in a Lagos hotel before returning to Port Harcourt on the 9th of April 2020 with the aid of the security personnel manning our borders.
When his symptoms started, he was admitted to a private hospital, (St. Martin’s Hospital) on the 20th and discharged on the 21st of April 2020 before testing positive to the virus after almost over two weeks of close contacts with other people”. He also revealed that the patient was first at Saint Martin’s hospital before he tested positive of the COVID-nineteen. He said the children of the woman who just died of COVID-nineteen had threatened the state government, but have all tested positive for the COVID-nineteen, including the pastor who was praying for her.
The Governor also noted that the state has not received any form of assistance from the Federal government, neither has the NCDC built testing centers in the state. Rivers state has now confirmed 14 cases of the COVID-nineteen. Two have been discharged while 2 have died.