Elder statesman, Chief Edwin Clark, has called for sanctions against Kogi Governor Yahaya Bello over his claims that coronavirus is not real.
He urged Nigerians to support efforts by government to stop the spread of the pandemic.
He said: “The governor of Kogi State, Yahaya Bello, should be ashamed of himself. He should be sanctioned.
“This is a man parading self that he wants to be President of Nigeria. It’s all nonsense. Some of them feel because they are very close to Mr. President, they can do anything.”
Clark, who has just recovered from COVID-19, spoke on Wednesday in Kiagbodo, Delta State.
He said the timing of the National Identification Number (NIN) was wrong and urged President Muhammadu Buhari to suspend the process due to rising COVID-19 cases.
According him: “First, let me say COVID-19 is real. The ongoing NIN is a very irresponsible action from Federal Government. You cannot be asking Nigerians to go and queue without social distancing and wearing face mask, and struggling to register. For what? Under this period, how many people are they going to register?
“The duty of every government is security and welfare but as at today, you have people fighting everywhere to register for National Identity Number (NIN). What is so urgent about it? Who’s losing money if you don’t register now?
“I appeal to FG to stop this irresponsible exercise and concentrate on COVID-19. They (political leaders must show example to others. If at 93, I’m wearing face mask in my house, nobody should be exempted including Mr President. They should show example to Nigerians. The regulations should be carried out.”
He said he recovered from COVID-19 two weeks after testing positive.
Clark said he contracted Covid-19 after his niece who visited his Abuja home became sick and later tested positive for the virus.
He also confirmed all nine of his staff and siblings who tested positive, have recovered.
Recounting his ordeals, the octogenarian said he was treated for 14 days before subsequent tests by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) returned negative.
He said given his old age and underlying health challenges, he was worried, especially after having adhered to NCDC protocols since outbreak of the virus.
He said: “Sometime last month (January) I got a call from one of my nieces that she was just coming from Warri. I told her that you people in Warri don’t observe COVID-19 protocols very well and I said she should stay in the guest house.
“On the third day she became very ill. She was very weak, coughing, and that she has malaria. I directed that she should be taken to my clinic. Because she was coughing, the doctor said she should go for a COVID test.
“The following day (Friday) the Health Minister sent doctors and 24 of us in the house were tested and the Saturday of it the result came and nine of us tested positive. Number one on the list, was myself. I was terribly worried.
“He (Dr. Osagie Ehanire) contacted the FCT team and they said they want to evacuate me to a good isolation centre but I insisted on treatment from home. They said that was okay.
“They sent doctors to look after me and the rest who tested positive. I was worried because I have heard of people dying of the virus.”
He described his 14- day isolation and treatment period as “terrible experience”, adding that he was at a point scared of the virus.
Clark said aside from malaria, he did not develop other symptoms of the virus until he was confirmed positive.
The Ijaw leader commended the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehanire and officials of the Ministry of Health for prompt response that led to his quick recovery from the virus.
Credit: The Nation