LAGOS (Reuters) – Nigerian authorities have actually gotten in touch with around 100 people who might have been exposed to an Italian man who is the country’s very first coronavirus patient, a Lagos state official stated on Sunday, in a quote to stop an outbreak in Africa’s most populated country.
Nigeria’s Minister of Health Osagie Ehanire briefs the media on the status of the novel coronavirus COVID-19 in Abuja, Nigeria March 2,2020 REUTERS/Afolabi Sotunde
The case, the first in sub-Saharan Africa, has prompted fears the virus could spread out rapidly in Lagos. The densely inhabited commercial capital of 20 million individuals is the biggest city in a country of some 200 million occupants.
Health specialists are concerned about an outbreak in an area where health systems are already overburdened with cases of malaria, measles, Ebola and other infectious diseases.
The Italian man shown up in Lagos on Feb. 24 from Milan on a Turkish Airlines flight that had a connection in Istanbul. The following day he took a trip to neighboring Ogun state and remained in the country for nearly two complete days prior to being separated.
Asked in a telephone interview about the number of people Nigerian authorities had actually been in touch with who might have had contact with the guy, Lagos state Health Commissioner Akin Abayomi said: “It is around 100 people but that number is increasing every minute.”
The client works as a supplier for cement business Lafarge Africa Plc ( WAPCO.LG) in the southwestern state of Ogun.
” The number is increasing all the time as we find people who were on the flight. We found people who were on the journey to Ogun, in contact with him at the factory and individuals at the hotel,” Abayomi stated.
Health Minister Osagie Ehanire, speaking on Nigerian TV, stated the man was responding to treatment and seemed to be “en route to healing”.
President Muhammadu Buhari’s spokesperson, in a statement released late on Sunday, required calm.
” President Buhari advises Nigerians not to panic about the news of this very first case of Covid-19 in our nation, as undue alarm would do us more harm than great,” stated the statement.
Lafarge provided a declaration on Sunday in which it stated its cement production lines stayed open. It stated 39 individuals who were in direct contact with the man had been quarantined.
Reporting by Alexis Akwagyiram; Additional reporting by Camillus Eboh and Felix Onuah in Abuja; Modifying by Mark Potter and Ros Russell