— As Mrs Apedzan Tests Negative to COVID-19
By Godwin Akor, Makurdi
Benue State Government has reversed its decision to reopen worship centres, markets and public places.
Govenor Samuel Ortom announced this today while briefing journalists at the Benue Peoples House Makurdi,
He said Benue had decided to accept the advice of the Federal Government and the Christian Association of Nigeria as well as other religious bodies against reopening of worship centres and other public places.
The governor said Benue was part of the Nigerian Federation and has been working in collaboration with relevant federal agencies including the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC.
“We are a component part of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and we appreciate the fact that the Federal Government is the custodian of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, and they are informed about what is going on, and so we must subject ourselves to their decision in accordance with laws of the land” he explained. .
Ortom further stated thus : “We do not want to endanger the lives of our people, In the event of any challenge concerning this pandemic, the next port of call will be the Federal Government, so we cannot kick against their advice”.
Governor Ortom appreciated Benue people and thanked them, saying, the Christian Association of Nigeria, Benue State chapter and the Muslim community; cannot attend church service or mosque when the lives of the members are threatened by COVID -19.
Governor Ortom therefore,, on behalf of the State Executive Council, reversed the lifting of ban on churches and mosques, pointing out that “we have reversed to the status quo where churches, mosques and other public places like markets were closed”.
He said there would be no church services or mosque prayers where people will gather, adding that same restrictions cover burials, weddings and other public gatherings which number must not exceed 30 persons as we said earlier..
He urged everyone to appreciate the fact that Coronavirus was real and deadly and there was no cure yet, but that there were preventive measures put in place by health expers.
“We advise our people to strictly observe COVID-19 protocol such as washing of hands with soap, wearing of face masks, use of alcohol based hand sanitizers and social distancing” he m as obtained.
“We want to call on Benue people to understand with us. This is a serious matter and we must not take things for granted. We will continue to work with the Federal Government to see when it will be convenient to relax the lockdown,” he stated.
Also at the briefing, Governor Ortom announced that the third COVID-19 case in the state, Mrs. Rebecca Apedzan had tested negative to the virus and would be discharged today.