Nigeria

Makinde didn’t contact COVID-19 at Ibadan rally, says media aide

Contrary to insinuations in some quarters that the governor of Oyo State, Engineer Seyi Makinde, who on Monday, tested positive to COVID-19, contacted the disease at a zonal rally of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) held in Ibadan, the Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Mr Taiwo Adisa, has said that his boss did not contract the disease at the much-talked-about PDP unification rally.

The governor’s spokesman, who spoke to Silverbird Television on Tuesday, explained that there was no known incident of COVID-19 as of the time the rally was held.

He said: “The issue of the governor being said to have contacted COVID-19 at the March 18 PDP Southwest zonal unification rally doesn’t come to play because there was no known incident of the virus in Oyo State at that time. Also, the governor didn’t have any symptom(s) as of that time.

“At the time that the rally was held, there was no known case of the COVID-19 and after the rally, Governor Makinde actually put out a message to indicate that if he had got a hint of the existence of coronavirus in the state an hour to the rally, he would have cancelled the event. He took responsibility for holding the rally.

“So, we can’t afford to politicise the issue of COVID-19. It is beyond politics,” he said.

Adisa, who noted that the only plausible case of exposure that Governor Makinde had to coronavirus was when he attended the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting on March 19, 2020, a day after the Ibadan rally, said that indeed, all governors who attended that meeting were advised to self-isolate and undergo testing after one of the attendees tested positive to the virus.

He said: “The Nigerian Governors’ Forum had a meeting on March 18 and Governor Makinde joined his colleagues on March 19 for the National Economic Council (NEC) meeting. He had contacts with people that have now tested positive to the virus. So, we should not politicise an issue like this.”

Adisa warned individuals trying to politicise the governor’s case to desist from doing so and look for ways of supporting the efforts to stop the spread of the virus.

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