Tony Akowe, Abuja
The House of Representatives has mandated the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to immediately evaluate the Benue COVID-19 index case and if proven otherwise, should be allowed to go home instead of keeping her in isolation
There has been controversy over the case of one Mrs. Susan Idoko-Okpe, who reportedly tested positive and has been in isolation for over 45 days even when she disowned the result being credited to her.
Unanimously adopting a motion of urgent public importance sponsored by Rep. Blessing Onuh, the House also asks the NCDC to also carry out quality contact tracing and encourage persons who are symptomatic to go for proper clinical evaluation and management with prompt release when they return to their premorbid state.
The House also wants the government and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control and the Presidential Task Force to discourage stigmatization, inhumane treatment and violation of human rights.
Onuh informed the House that that one Mrs. Susan Idoko-Okpe, Nee Lawani, a 56 year old woman who is an indigene of Benue State with a dual citizenship from the United Kingdom flew into the country for her mother‘s funeral on the 22nd of March this year, but unfortunately got quarantined by the government for the COVID-19 VIRUS, an assertion backed up by discrepancies in the laboratory results.
She said that the said Mrs. Susan Idoko-Okpe. Nee Lawani had a long flight following her departure from the United Kingdom and must have had jet-lag, a common occurrence which necessitated her presentation to the Cottage hospital where she was primarily managed.
She expressed concern about details of the health status of this Mrs. Susan ldoko-Okpe Nee Lawani which she said is not consistent with that of the lady who was referred from Benue State Teaching Hospital, Makurdi to University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Abuja.
She said further that the personal information on the laboratory result from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) did not also tally with her personal details.
She asked the House to take cognisant of the fact that the current situation in the country amid the global pandemic is real not a death sentence or a yardstick for discrimination and human rights infringement or violation and therefore her case should not be different.
While lauding measures put in place by the government to tackle the disease, Rep. Onuh said Mrs. Susan Idoko-Okpe Nee Lawani who is bereaved is beginning to deteriorate psychologically and already having suicidal thoughts.
This, she said is worsened by the fact that “she has been in isolation for about fifty days without any form of treatment. It is imperative to stress further that the test result given to her abolition was questionable as it didn’t carry her information’s correctly (definitely not hers], while other results were given verbally. She has also been forced to take treatment for COVID -19 even in her asymptomatic state”.