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Published On: Mon, Apr 20th, 2020

COVID-19 lockdown: Panic as FCT residents groan over possible community transmission

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By Stanley Onyekwere

There is palpable tension among FCT residents over the possibility of community transmission of the dreaded coronavirus otherwise known as COVID-19, in the wake of the discovery of positive cases of Covid-19 in a densely populated settlement within Mabushi District of the nation’s capital city.
Recall that as at Saturday, 49 new cases of Covid-19 were reported in Nigeria, with 12 of such cases in Abuja. While FCT had 81 confirmed cases as of Saturday night, there were 56 active cases, 23 discharged patients and two fatalities.
However, there had been few cases in Mabushi but the majority of cases uncovered on Saturday were from the village, with health officials now putting the total at 12.
One case was also uncovered at Gishiri village, another low-income but densely populated community in the territory. None of the identified cases had any recent history of foreign travel or coming in contact with a returnee.
It was gathered that FCTA officials as well as other relevant stakeholders are working round the clock to trace all contacts related to the identified cases.
An epidemiologist in the FCT Administration who spoke on the condition of anonymity as he was not authorised to speak to the Press, described the situation as worrying.
“Due to the fear of community transmission, we had embarked on community active case search. We focused on Mpape due to its proximity to Maitama where we had a lot of cases.
“Then we went to Gishiri. We got one positive case. What is worrisome is the situation in Mabushi where we have gotten 12 positive cases already”, he said.
While he praised the FCT minister, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello for his assistance to health workers, he warned residents against trying to circumvent the rules of the lockdown, describing the Covid-19 pandemic as “an existential threat which must be tackled by all means possible”.

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