The Lagos state government and the federal ministry of health have confirmed the first case of coronavirus in Nigeria.
In a statement by Akin Abayomi, the state commissioner for health, the case is an Italian citizen who entered Nigeria on the 25th of February from Milan, Italy for a brief business visit.
According to another statement by Osagie Enahire, the federal minister of health, the case 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 minister advised that citizens must not abuse social media and indulge in spreading misinformation that causes fear and panic.
“The Federal Ministry of Health, through Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, will continue to provide updates and will initiate all measures required to prevent the spread of any outbreak in Nigeria,” he said.
NIGERIA IS PREPARED TO TACKLE COVID-19
The minister added that “the government of Nigeria, through the Federal Ministry of Health has been strengthening measures to ensure an outbreak in Nigeria is controlled and contained quickly”.
“The multi-sectoral Coronavirus Preparedness Group led by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has immediately activated its national Emergency Operations Centre and will work closely with Lagos State Health authorities to respond to this case and implement firm control measures.
“I wish to assure all Nigerians that have we have been beefing up our preparedness capabilities since the first confirmation of cases in China, and we will use all the resources made available by the government to respond to this case.
“We have already started working to identify all the contacts of the patient, since he entered Nigeria. Please be reminded that most people who become infected may experience only mild illness and recover easily, but it can be more severe in others, particularly the elderly and persons with other underlying chronic illnesses.”
Over 80,000 cases have been recorded globally, out of which more than 33,000 people have recovered. Nigeria becomes the 52nd country to confirm a positive case of the virus.