Taraba State on Friday relaxed the lockdown orders its enacted to limit the spread of Coronavirus in the State.
Markets and shops were opened (from 6am to 8pm) for residents to buy essential goods and do other businesses. Muslims were also allowed to worship in groups in mosques and streets.
Christians will also worship in churches on Sunday. The State will however, return to lockdown on Monday and will open next weekend.
However, the people are to still wear face masks and adhere to the social distancing orders.
Taraba, according to the Commissioners of Health and Information, Innocent Vakkai and Danjuma Adamu, has no active case of Covid-19 at the moment. And no one has died of the virus in the State.
“Taraba is listed fifth position among States with the least infection,” Vakkai, who chairs the Task Force on Covid-19 in the State stated at a press conference.
It was gathered that Taraba relies more on preventive measures to prevent the virus from entering the State. It ordered the closure of land borders with neighbouring states as well as the international boundary with the Republic of Cameroon. Governor Darius Ishaku had also shutdown places of worship, schools, markets and other public places that attract large crowds.
The governor, in state broadcasts, told Tarabans to strictly adhere to the preventive measures approved by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and endorsed by the NCDC, such as regular washing of hands with soap and water, use of sanitizers and social distancing.
Resources, Ishaku said, were mobilised for the procurement of drugs, testing equipment and provision of two treatment centres at the State Specialist Hospital, Jalingo and the Federal Medical Centre also in Jalingo with a combined capacity to handle 22 cases.
All suspected cases were quarantined for the NCDC’s mandatory 14 days and tested twice negative before they were discharged. The State government took upon it’s shoulders the responsibility of providing food, security and other services for persons quarantined, it was learnt.
It was a cheering news for Taraba when samples of the 300 suspected cases gotten through ‘Contact Tracing’ tested negative. Residents are jubilating the breakthrough.
“At the moment, all the 18 positive cases previously reported were successfully treated and discharged. And no death was recorded during the process. Now, Taraba State has no active case of Covid-19,” Vakkai, told newsmen.
The Health commissioner disclosed that out of the 18 treated cases, only one is a Taraban. He assured that the Task Force on the pandemic will do it’s best to maintain the zero status.
Access Bank assisted Taraba with 100 beds at the NYSC isolation centre. The North East Development Commission (NEDC) donated two ambulances, two hundred infrared thermometers, food items, ventilators and Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) such as sanitizers and face masks.
Not yet Uhuru
Vakkai has said, it is not yet Uhuru for Taraba, in spite of the war half won against Covid-19. He has told Tarabans: “Even with the present zero case of Coronavirus infection in Taraba, I cannot yet say the State is completely free of the risk of infection. You must continue to wash your hands with water and soap regularly, use sanitizers, maintain social distancing, wear face masks, avoid handshakes and observe lockdown.”