Death of Bonny council chair triggers Covid-19 panic in Rivers

Mr. David Irimagha, Chairman, Bonny Local Government of Rivers State: dies from COVID-19 complications

By Okafor Ofiebor/Port Harcourt

The death of Bonny Local Government in Rivers, Mr. David Irimagha on Saturday of suspected Covid-19 has led to panic among residents of the of the Council and the state in general.

Irimagha is the latest known high profile personality suspected to have succumbed to deadly virus in the state.

It was learnt that Irimagha died on Saturday at an undisclosed hospital in Port Harcourt, the state capital of complications associated with Covid-19

But his death has not been confirmed by his family or his local government council as at the time of filing in this story.

Late Irimagha recently celebrated 100 days of his second tenure in office.

A former leader of the Bonny Legislative Assembly, he was elected for a second term of office on Saturday, April 17, 2021 and subsequently sworn into office by Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike at Government House, Port Harcourt on June 17.

A close source said: “He has been sick for a while now. He was complaining of not feeling well and we hear that his lungs were rupturing and he went into coma and later gave up the ghost around midnight of Saturday September 18.”

His death came amidst report of upsurge in the cases of COVID-19 in the state, according to latest figures released by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, NCDC.

The  NCDC said it has identified three local governments in Rivers State with the highest number of Coronavirus cases.

According to the NCDC, the local governments are:  Obio Akpor, Eleme and Port Harcourt.

The Senior Public Health Promotion Officer, NCDC, Junaid Mohammed, disclosed this to journalists at the end of a meeting with stakeholders on maternal, newborn and child health at the Primary Health Care Management Board in Port Harcourt on Saturday.

Junaid said the NCDC is in the state because of the high rate of COVID-19 cases.

He also emphasized the need for people to get vaccinated against the virus.

He noted that “the NCDC necessitates the need to deploy a team to help the state response in the area of coordination case search, case investigation, data management, and risk communication activities.

“We have recorded the challenges identified so far. We sat down with the state government, the state ministry of health, and primary health care so we can brief them on what we were able to find during our stay here and luckily enough we were able to achieve 5/10 and the other issues beyond the state level we have been able to escalate it to the national.”