May 30, 2023

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The President, Federal Republic Of Nigeria, Mohammed Buhari, has appealed to members of the National Assembly to conduct themselves in an honourable manner, especially in the face of the measure to conduct basic screening for air travellers arriving the country from international trips, as a measure to nip in the bud, the unwitting spread of the Chinese virus, Covid-19.

The appeal was contained in a letter from the Presidency to the leadership of the Senate and that of the House of Representatives that, the presidency had been inundated with reports from the international airports about legislators in both houses disregarding the laid down procedure for screening travellers arriving the country.

It also urged members of the Senate and House of Representatives who had been fingered to be in the flights where confirmed persons infected with coronavirus flew into the country to go and identify themselves for proper prophylactic treatment as a quick way to keep the Chinese virus at bay in the country.

In the memo emanated from the State House, Abuja, dated 21st March 2020 with reference number, SH/COS/TP/03, it stated that “It has been brought to the Honourable Minister of Health recently and had reported to this office that some members of the House of Representatives are refusing to subject themselves to medical screening at airports”

LEFT: Speaker, Olufemi Hakeem Gbajabiamila with Senate President, Ahmed Lawan

The memo further impressed it on the legislators that, “these airports screenings are our primary line of defence and refusal by any citizen to subject to these tests is a threat to our nation”.

Hence, the memo which was signed by the Chief Of Staff to the President, Mr Abba Kyari, urged the Speaker, House Of Representatives, Olufemi Hakeem Gbajabiamila, “to direct all members of the House of Representatives who returned to Nigeria from foreign trips to report themselves to the nearest, National Centre for Disease Control, NCDC, test centre with immediate effect”.

An effort in a public appeal to those who should know better was the recent public announcement by the Lagos State Ministry of Health, requesting passengers that arrived with British Airways, flight BA75 and KLM flight 587, to the Murtala Mohammed International Airport, MMIA, Ikeja, Lagos, on Wednesday, 18th March 2020, to call its toll free line- 08000CORONA.

According to the information on Tolu Ogunlesi’s twitter handle, the passengers in the flights had been exposed to confirmed Covid-19 patients in those two different flights and as such, it is imperative they come to the NCDC test centre to determine their status and when found necessary, they begin intensive care treatment. The measure is not only to safe the infected but to drastically mitigate further infections of the generality of the people.

Furthermore, a US Senator, Rand Paul, has tested positive for coronavirus and is in quarantine, the Kentucky Republican is the first member of the upper chamber of Congress to contract the virus.

Senator, Randal Howard Paul, from Kentucky

The politician revealed the news on his official Twitter account, announcing that he is “feeling fine” and has not displayed any symptoms of the Covid-19 illness. The Twitter statement said that he was tested “out of an abundance of caution due to his extensive travel and events”.

It added that Paul was not aware that he had any direct contact with anyone carrying the virus and he expects to be back in the Senate after his quarantine period ends.

Randal Howard Paul is an American politician and physician serving as the junior United States Senator from Kentucky since 2011. He is the son of former U.S. Representative Ron Paul of Texas who was a presidential candidate in 1988, 2008, and 2012.

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