Governor Nyesom Wike says the Rivers State Government will not be in a hurry to reopen the State for business..
Wike said at a news briefing which was broadcast live that any decision to lift some of the stay-at-home-restrictions ordered by his administration would be influenced by peculiarities on ground.
“While we agree with Mr. President’s decision to gradually re-open the country for business, we shall be guided by the peculiarities of our State on when to relax the measures we have put in place and gradually restore business activities to the State.
“Accordingly, the directives and restrictions we have put in place to maintain social distancing must continue and all residents are advised to strictly follow and comply in the interest of the health and lives of everybody.”
Wike announced that the wearing of masks in these times is now compulsory throughout the State.
This would imply that anyone who fails to comply with the directive may be deemed to have committed an offence as the State positions to take the war to the virus.
The number of cases that are being recorded in the State suggest the last has not been heard of the Coronavirus.
13 cases have been confirmed in Rivers State.
One fatality has been recorded in the State.
“Generally, we believe that unless there is a sudden and vertical slide into community transmission, we expect our COVID-19 infection and prevalent rate to continue along this low trajectory”, Wike noted.
“For us as a Government, every single new infection of COVID-19 in our State is one too many.
“We shall therefore continue to take every necessary measure to control and possibly end the transmission of this disease in Rivers State in spite of the enormous challenges and lack of concrete support from the Federal Government”, the Governor remarked.
He said the State has been forced to take destiny into its hands, following what he described as the betrayal of security operatives posted to entry points.
“The 7th infected case”, Wike explained, “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”, the Governor disclosed.
He said a boundary monitoring outfit comprised of Rivers men was now in place to block such leaks.
“We have taken our fate in our own hands with the establishment of the Border security task force, which has been mandated to provide and ensure a water-tight situation in all our entry and exit points and prevent any unauthorized entry and or exit of persons and vehicles into the State during the period of the closure.
“These are all Rivers sons and we expect them to protect the interest of the State at all cost, and not compromise and risk the health and survival of our people in exchange for some filthy naira notes.”
Governor Wike said government was aware of the burden that Rivers people are being made to bear.
“We understand the pain on our people but this is inevitable under the present situation in order for us to make the gain of freeing our State and our people from the ravaging pandemic”, the Rivers Governor added.
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