Ebonyi Govt confirms re-arrest of escaped COVID-19 patient


The Ebonyi State Government on Thursday said that it had rearrested  the COVID-19  patient that escaped while being treated at the state’s isolation centre in Abakaliki.

The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Daniel Umezurike, confirmed the development while briefing newsmen on the outcome of the state’s  Executive Council’s (EXCO) meeting.

He also assured the residents of the state that there was no cause for alarm on the issue.

Umezurike said that the patient whom he described as a ‘young lady’, had been successfully brought back to the isolation centre.

He said:“We will, however, not reveal the strategy we used but we used tracking devices on such issues based on the seriousness of escape from the isolation centre.

“The repercussion may lead to community transmission which we have been careful and trying to avoid in the state,” he said.

The commissioner also said that a similar incident occurred in  Afikpo North Local Government Area which involved some returnees quarantined at the quarantine centre in the council.

“We can confirm that just before the results of ‘persons of interests’ came out, some of them were no where  to be found.

“When the results came out, we employed all the measures; the fastest and most effective and recovered all of them.

“It is rightly observed that some of them went back to their families and when we considered that the exposure was significant, we brought them back to the quarantine centre.

“We are, however, monitoring the secondary contacts through surveillance and contact tracing which is the standard practice.”

The  Commissioner for Information and Orientation, Mr Uchenna  Orji, commended the health commissioner and his team for being proactive in the fight against the disease in the state.

“The commissioner and his team have listed 2,240 persons for contact tracing and this implies that most of ‘these concerns’ have been listed for such tracing.

“We have not recorded any case of community transmission so far and in the case of escape, the team will always do the contact tracing effectively,” he said.