Egena Sunday Ode, Abuja.
As some high profile Nigerians continued to return positive results for COVID -19 test, the presidency has said that President Muhammadu Buhari’s negative test result for the virus calls for rejoicing by all.
Buhari was reported to have undergone a test for the deadly coronavirus on Monday following the positive result returned by his Chief of Staff, Abba Kyari who was earlier tested for the virus. The presidency has, however, not spoken officially on the status of the president.
Aside Kyari, Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State and the Speaker of Edo State House of Assembly are among high profile Nigerians that have been confirmed to have the virus, while a good number are currently in self-isolation.
Special Adviser to the president on media and publicity, Femi Adesina who spoke on the issue while fielding questions from journalists in Abuja Wednesday was not however categorical.
Asked whether indeed the president was tested for COVID-19, Adesina responded: “What did you hear about the result?”
When told, “negative,”he added: “Good. So, that calls for rejoicing with him. Anybody that does the test and tests negative, we will rejoice with that person. And anybody that does it and tests positive, it’s not a death sentence.
“We also would pray along with the person, give the person our good will and best wishes and they will surely come out of it.
“Even the index case in Nigeria recovered and has been discharged. So, God that has shown us mercy thus far and will continue to show that mercy.
“Anybody that tests positive is not a dead sentence. They will be attended to, they will be tested and they will be fine.”
The Presidential Spokesman noted that things were on low key at the presidential villa, which he said had not necessarily shut down its activities.
He added: “Well, things are a bit on a low key, it doesn’t mean that the State House is shut down. It’s just that things are a bit on the low key just like the rest of the country.
“The rest of the country is also on a low key. There is partial lockdown in most parts of the country. So, what is happening at the State House can also be called a partial lockdown but not a complete lockdown.”
Adeaina explained that the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting was suspended because of the size of participants, which would have gone beyond the number recommended for meetings under the threat of COVID-19.
He said: “The Council was suspended because of the size. You have over 50 people seated in the Council Chambers whenever the meeting holds and that is not advisable at a time like this.
“But if there would be a very important decision to be taken, you can always summon the relevant people, three, four or five and hold a small meeting and arrive at a decision.
“It does not mean that one man is going to be taking all the decisions. Of course, yes, there are executive decisions but the ones that must pass through consultations of which must have a buy in of the federal executive council can always be discussed at a smaller meeting.”