Gombe State government has been commended for taking proactive measures at the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, a development which greatly assisted in curtailing the spread of the virus in the state.
Newsmen report that the commendation was made by Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Ministerial Task Team on COVID-19 led by Dr Nasir Sani Gwarzo during a courtesy call on Gombe State governor, Muhammad Inuwa Yahaya, after an assessment tour of Covid-19 activities in the state.
Gwarzo declared that the proactive measures put in place by the state government even before the break out of COVID-19 in the state including the institution of a taskforce committee and establishing isolation centres among others helped in checking the negative effects of the pandemic in the state.
He said that, “the thematic analysis of what we saw at the coordination level is that the state is well prepared, they have a team that has been well assembled even before the onset of the epidemic in the state and the state is lucky to have some of the best hands in the country. So the state has a formidable team, they have a good work plan and the government is funding the plan.”
The team lead, however, advised the state government to strengthen surveillance at its entry points considering the state’s location at the centre of the North East, noting that majority of positive cases reported from Gombe State were travellers transiting through Gombe.
He added that measures so far taken at the entry points had greatly reduced the chances of community spread of the virus.
Dr Gwarzo also assured the governor that efforts will be geared towards ensuring that the testing machine for the state comes in good time because of the strategic location of the state.
He said: “When we go back, we will do whatever it takes to mount additional pressure and advocacy to ensure that the state was prioritised for a testing machine.
“Initially, they were going to Abuja and later to Vom (Plateau State) to make things easy. But to our sad discovery, over 280 samples are still pending which is not good. Imagine yourself waiting several days to receive the result of a test that will determine whether you have COVID-19 or not,” he lamented.
While responding, Governor Yahaya attributed the successes achieved in the state to the proactive measures put in place by the government through the state taskforce, promising that it is open to adjustments whenever the need arise.
He, however, pointed out that the lack of a testing machine in the state had been the greatest challenge, stressing that: “We will align with NCDC but they have to do their best so that together we will take Nigerians out of this pandemic.”