The first case of the deadly Coronavirus has been confirmed in Nigeria, in the commercial capital of Lagos.
An Italian citizen who entered Nigeria via Lagos on the 25th of February from Milan, Italy for a brief business visit was confirmed to have the virus.
Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, in a statement early on Friday said Lagos State has reported the patient to the Federal Ministry of Health.
“He fell ill on the 26th February and was transferred to Lagos State Biosecurity Facilities for isolation and testing. COVID-19 infection was confirmed by the Virology Laboratory of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, part of the Laboratory Network of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control. The patient is clinically stable, with no serious symptoms, and is being managed at the Infectious Disease Hospital in Yaba, Lagos,”he said.
Abayomi said government was working to identify all the contacts of the patient, since he arrived in Nigeria.
“Please, be reminded that most people who become infected may experience only a mild illness and recover easily, but it can be more severe in others, particularly the elderly”, he said.
The case, which was confirmed on the 27th of February 2020, is the first case to be reported in Nigeria since the outbreak in China in late December 2019.
And it underscored the eerie warning by the WHO Director General, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus that all countries need to prepare to combat the deadly coronavirus.
With new infections reported around the world now surpassing those in mainland China, Ghebreyesus said even rich nations should prepare.
“No country should assume it won’t get cases, that would be a fatal mistake, quite literally,” Tedros said, pointing to Italy, where 17 people have died in Europe’s worst outbreak.