By Gabriel Chy Alonta
As part of measures to stem the spread of coronavirus pandemic in Anambra state, traditional rulers in the state have undergone COVID-19 test.
The test, which was carried out by medical personnel from the state ministry of health, was held at the traditional rulers’ council chambers, Government House, Awka.
The test became necessary to ensure that none of the royal fathers was infected by the virus, the paper gathered.
In a remark, the chairman, Anambra State Traditional Rulers Council, Obi Alfred Achebe, told the royal fathers that COVID-19 testing was not a death sentence, but was key to early detection as it increased chances of survival.
Achebe, who spoke through his deputy, Igwe Sunday Okafor of Okpuno, frowned at Nigerians who still believe that COVID-19 is not real. He urged them to shun fear and avail themselves of the free COVID-19 test, noting that health is wealth.
In their separate speeches the traditional rulers acknowledged the efforts of Governor willie Obiano the (health) commissioner Dr Vincent Okpala, for taking different proactive measures aimed at curbing the spread of the virus. The rulers included Igwe Kenneth Orizu of Nnewi, Igwe Pius Omachonu of Olumbanasaa, Igwe Felix Onyimadu of Ukpor, Igwe George Ekwealor of Umuoba Anam and Igwe Christopher Okpala of Akwaeze.
The royal fathers urged government to extend the COVID-19 test to all the villages in the state to enable their subjects benefit.
They promised to help in ensuring full enforcement of COVID-19 protection guidelines of masking up, social distancing, no shaking of hands, hand washing with soap and water, as well as regular use of hand sanitisers to their subjects, among others.
Earlier, the State Diseases Surveillance and Notification Officer, Mrs Nelly Dike, explained that the second wave of COVID-19 was more serious, while expressing satisfaction with the turnout of the traditional rulers. She noted that the collection of the sample would enable them to identify those that have it, so they can go for treatment. According to her, knowing their status would help curb the spread in their various communities.