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Borno shuts IDPs against visitors - COVID-19

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Tiamiyu Saheed Oluwatosin
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calendar-icon Posted on: 2020-03-25 14:14:10
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F-CAMEROON-A-20150806 FOTOR



The Borno State Government has banned visitors to all Internally Displaced Persons’ camps across the state in order to properly curtail the spread of the dreaded Covid-19.

Governor Babagana Umara Zulum who gave the directive to shut all IDP camps from visitors said the strategy will contain the spread of the virus if there is no contact with visitors coming.

The governor said, with about two million Internally Displaced Persons in camps in the state, government was not going to play around with the lives of these vulnerable people who by their conditions are living in a high risk situation in which the slightest contact with the Coronavirus can result to serious calamity.

The governor who had appointed the deputy governor, Umar Usman Kadafur to head the response team in fashioning ways to prevent Coronavirus also said the strategy taken and put to action by the administration was a good one.

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The World Health Organization (WHO) and the State’s Ministries of Health, Education, Transport, Information, Local Governments, Religious Affairs and Humanitarian Affairs are part of the team responding to Covid-19 in Borno State.

The ban for visitors into the IDP camps was informed by the ongoing panic and the casualty figure which has increased to almost 20,000 globally.

Chairperson of the State Emergency Management Agency (SEMA), Hajiya Yabawa Kolo, who announced the ban said that the decision to ban visitors to camps was taken during a meeting with 51 IDP camp managers on Monday.

“The state took the decision as one of the strategies to prevent the importation of the virus into camps. This measure becomes necessary as some of the neighbouring countries of Chad, Niger and Cameroon have cases of COVID-19.

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“Despite the closure of land borders by the neighbouring countries, there was still influx of IDPs into the state. We know we have a lot of threats around us following sighting of suspected cases of the virus in Cameroon and Chad, and we have some border towns very close to those countries. We do not want to go to the issue of response because even in developed countries, it is difficult for them to contain this pandemic.

“At our own level, we are positioning ourselves to see how best we can stop the virus from transmitting in the state,” Yabawa said.

All camp managers from Gambouru Ngala, Damasak, Kala/Balge, Banki, Bama and Monguno were directed not to accept IDPs from any of the neighbouring countries into camps in those locations.

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