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The Kogi state government has insisted that the state is still COVID-19.

In a statement on Wednesday, Saka Haruna Audu, Kogi health commissioner, said the state government has developed “full testing capacity” and “conducted hundreds of tests” which have come back negative.

This position is contrary to the result announced by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) which said two people have tested positive for COVID-19 in the state.


In the statement, Audu said the state would not be a party “to any fictitious COVID-19 claims”.

“Kogi State till this very moment is Covid-19 free. We have developed full testing capacity and have conducted hundreds of tests so far which have come back negative,” he said.

“We have also continued to insist that we will not be a party to any fictitious COVID-19 claims which is why we do not recognise any COVID-19 test conducted by any Kogite outside the boundaries of the State except those initiated by us.

“Any attempt to force us to announce a case of COVID-19 will be vehemently rejected.”

The commissioner asked residents of the state to continue to take all necessary precautions to prevent a spread of the disease.

“We are more than prepared to secure the life of our people and have no interest in playing politics with their health concerns,” he said.

But Kingsley Fanwo, commissioner for information, said the state was evaluating the situation and gathering the facts.

”We cannot comment on the claims for now. We got to know like every other person. So we are evaluating the situation and gathering the facts,” he said.

”When we have all the facts and information, we will communicate our position adequately and appropriately. Public health is a thing of great interest to the administration. Our people should remain calm as we gather the facts.”

There was a controversy after the first visit of NCDC officials to the state. Yahaya Bello, the governor, had ordered officials to leave the state or be quarantined for 14 days.

The centre said Kogi had conducted only one test but, the state claimed it had done 111 tests that turned out negative.

Monday 18, 2020: 11.53PM. 216 new cases of COVID-19 have just been recorded across several states of Nigeria today.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC made this announcement this evening via Twitter, outlining Lagos with the highest number per state.

The new cases are distributed below:

Lagos74; Katsina 33; Oyo 19; Kano 17; Edo 13; Zamfara 10; Ogun 8; Gombe8

Borno 8; Bauchi 7; Kwara 7; -FCT 4; Kaduna 3; Enugu 3; Rivers 2

In total, 6175 cases of COVID-19 are now in Nigeria while 1644 have been discharged.

The country has also lost 191 to the novel disease.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) says 10 more people have tested positive to Coronavirus (COVID-19) in Kwara.

This brings the total of confirmed cases of Coronavirus to 44, with nine patients discharged and one death recorded in the state.

The State before now has 34 cases of the disease.

The Special Assistant on New Media to the state governor, Mr Fafoluyi Olayinka, confirmed this on Tuesday in his verified official social media account.

Olayinka said that the number of active cases as at 8 p.m is 34, while nine have so far been discharged and one death recorded.

NCDC also reported confirmation of 146 new cases of COVID-19 on Tuesday, bringing the total number of the virus in the country to 4787.

In an update published on its website, the NCDC also said 959 of the patients have been discharged, while the number of lives lost to the infection in Nigeria has risen to 158.

A breakdown of the new 146 cases, according to NCDC is, Lagos57,Kano 27, Kwara 10, Edo nine cases, Bauchi eight cases, Yobe seven cases and Kebbi with four cases.

There are also four cases of the virus in Oyo, three each in Katsina and Niger, two each in Plateau, Borno, Sokoto and Benue and one each in Gombe, Enugu, Ebonyi, Ogun, FCT and Rivers.

In the wake  of the rampaging Corona Virus Pandemic, a group of Researchers at the Federal University of Technology Akure,FUTA  led by Nathaniel Fagbemi  a Professor of Food Science Technology , has recommended the regular  consumption of  a blend of  Cocoa-Zobo-Ginger beverage  which  has the potential to boost  immunity of people  against communicable diseases and viruses . The Cocoa-Zobo-Ginger beverage with high antioxidant potential was developed by the FUTA Researchers from blends of  Hibiscus sabdariffa  (zobo) and ginger blends and Natural Cocoa Powder. The cocoa–zobo–ginger beverage possesses high antioxidant activities and show potential as a health security beverage that can boost immunity against diseases and viruses.

The researchers say though Oxidation reactions are necessary for life especially during respiration, complex electron transfer and incomplete reduction of oxygen can result into generation of highly reactive and damaging Reactive Oxygen Species leading to oxidative stress. Oxidative stress has been associated with the cause of significant damage to biological molecules such as lipids, proteins, DNA and development of chronic diseases such as cancer, arteriosclerosis, coronary heart disease, diabetes, neurological disorder and weakening of immune system.

They said research has shown that though the human body has physiological defense mechanism, which produces antioxidants to reduce oxidative damage, additional antioxidants may be necessary during severe oxidative stress and for constant maintenance of oxidative balance. Functional beverages that are high in antioxidants like the Zobo-Ginger-Cocoa drink can adequately protect against oxidative stress and boost immunity in case of stress or diseases. They said a better immunity help to fend off diseases and also improves chances of survival of ill persons. The Cocoa-Zobo-Ginger beverage could be made in cold or hot water extracts making it vital in the hot tropical climate as well as in the cold Harmattan seasons obtained in Nigeria. They said its ingredients are easily available and can be made and enjoyed by all strata of the society.

The University has the Cocoa-Zobo-Ginger beverage blends in sachets which hasbeen developed and exhibited in many NUC organized university trade fairs and scientific exhibitions and would be ready to enter into partnership with Government agencies and other interested stakeholders  for mass production . The Vice Chancellor, Professor Joseph Fuwape, said FUTA will continue to respond to emerging national and global trends and challenges through relevant researches and product development. 


Prof. Itse Sagay (SAN), Chairman of the Presidential Advisory Committee Against Corruption (PACAC) on Sunday said the federal government should back up officials of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) with security agencies and send them back to Kogi state to ascertain the COVID-19 status of the residents.

The Kogi state government had alleged that there are attempts to declare fake COVID-19 cases in the state. When a delegation from the NCDC visited the state on Thursday night, Governor Bello asked the team to go on 14-day isolation or leave the state immediately. The team then returned to Abuja.

However, Sagay who described the action of the state government as an illegality, said Governor Yahaya Bello was behaving as if he will win a prize if he continues to claim that the state has no single case of COVID-19. “That is a clear act of illegality. It is a clear case of provoking a more powerful entity than yourself and he got away with it.

Even as a layman in medicine, nobody needs to tell me that Kogi state is probably full of COVID-19 infected people. “From all that Yahaya Bello is doing, he is covering up. It’s as if there is a prize he will win if he continues to say there is not a single case of COVID-19 in the state. It is very childish and infantile act.

“Now, he is covering up but what it means is that when the thing spreads and death toll continues to rise like the case in Kano, then he will be overwhelmed and nobody will tell him before he crawls back to the federal government.

“What he did was illegal. He has no power to send back the NCDC officials who are acting under federal authority in this matter in which there is federal supremacy.  “If the federal government wants, it can send those NCDC officials back to Kogi state with full security and they will go in, do all the tests they want. Nobody will lift a finger against them, nobody will talk. They will do the tests well and be satisfied with the might and law behind them. 

“So, Yahaya Bello is just testing an authority that is far higher than him but he should thank God that we have an accommodating Federal government. The NCDC officials know there are COVID-19 infected cases in the state and the whole thing is just a cover up. I suspect it is the same situation in Cross River” he said.

Credit: Daily Independent