By Daniel Njienue, April, 29, 2020, News/interviews
“This is the season where people die of meningitis, typhoid, and malaria, which are endemic in Kano state. Thus, people should stop saying, it is coronavirus that killed people in Kano. Yes, I do know vividly, that the state government has not done enough as far as am concerned. I don’t believe they have enough competent people manning the key sector like health in Kano. They don’t have responsible and competent personnel to manage health care system in the state” This was the outburst of Dr. Junaid Mohammed, a second republic lawmaker and elder statesman, who strongly debunked the alleged deaths in Kano state to be coronavirus, stating the obvious and reiterating that not all the deaths in Kano are directly attributable to Covid-19. “Some of the people who died were old men who had been sick for long, like Prof. Ibrahim Alkali Ayagi, who was also my teacher as far back in 1968. He was sick for over six years before his recent demise. So, if a person dies, from a complication whether virus or other should not be seen as confusion or blame game”. He stated.
It could be noted that prominent Kano elites and others died from unknown ailment or diseases. The decease include Alhaji Dahiru Rabiu, the former Kano Grand Khadi, Hajiya Shamsiyya Mustapha and Hajiya Nene Umma, Dr. Musa Umar Gwarzo, an elder brother to a former deputy governor, Mal Musa Tijjani, a foremost Journalist and the former editor of both Triumph Newspaper, and Leadership newspapers, others wree Alhaji Adamu Isyaku Dal, former Executive Secretary, State Universal Basic Education Board and Alhaji Salisu Lad. This was after 150 deaths were recorded a week after, which the state government were quoted to have said, that some of the deaths and causes are yet to be ascertained.
Dr. Junaid who affirmatively stated that, first, and foremost, Malaria, typhoid, fever etc does kill, and the numbers of people who die from malaria yearly are even more than the number of people who die from the coronavirus. “I don’t believe half of the deaths in Kano is as a result of COVID-19, no! Death is death, and the cause of any death can only be known when diagnosis is carried out. Without diagnosis, nobody can tell of any death. And only irresponsible people can come out and say; so many people died of this or that, but in Kano’s case, autopsy has not been carried out, and if you want to carry out any autopsy or diagnosis, there must be necessary equipment –it is a very delicate matter” he added.
The second republic lawmaker however, noted that this is the season where people die of meningitis, typhoid, and malaria, which are endemic in Kano state. Thus, people should stop saying, it is coronavirus that killed people in Kano. Yes, I do know vividly, that the state government has not done enough as far as am concerned. I don’t believe they have enough competent people manning the key sector like health, they don’t have responsible and competent personnel to manage health care system in the state.
Continuing, the elder statesman hinted the unpreparedness of the state government towards COVID-19, thereby making reference to what he calls “the non-equipped and maintained Aminu Kano teaching hospital” Built by the Federal government, now being used by the state as an isolation centre cannot be said to be in a commendable state, so, who do we blame, “I don’t know”.
The fiery ex-lawmaker while berating NCDC for lack of quick response and logistics said that when you take a sample from somebody you suspect to be a patient of COVID19, you have to preserve it in a certain place, seal it, and carry it to a place where you have a situated laboratory, and a trained personnel will handle it. We don’t have such in Kano. When the so call NCDC or whatever it is, took samples for test from Kano- the road in Kano to Abuja is so bad, and it takes seven hours for the sample to be processed, before you test if the person is positive or negative. So, if the person test positive, you isolate him or her. NCDC took samples of 27 persons and it got spoiled, because you are to do something that is not supposed to last for seven hours in a non-refrigeration compartment, that was what happened. Dr. Junaid appealed to the Federal government to make available substantial amount including manpower and proactive measures to the state government as they did in Lagos and Osun State. Dr. Junaid spoke with our editor yesterday from Kano in a telephone interview.
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