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Yobe State to Investigate Cause of 150 Deaths in One Week

Yobe State Health Commissioner Mohammed Lawan Gana has pledged to “investigate and ascertain” the deaths of 150 people in the Nigerian towns of Potiskum, Gashua and Nguru.

According to Lawan, the deaths occurred in the past seven days while the fight against the spread of coronavirus in the state lingers, The Guardian reported Sunday.

“We’re dispatching experts to urgently investigate the dozens of deaths reported in Potiskum, Gashua and Nguru in the last seven days,” Lawan told The Guardian in a telephone interview, adding that the government is doing everything “humanly possible” to address public concern over deaths of 150 people in a week.

“In spite of the concern on possibility of community transmission of COVID-19, there is no evidence to prove that deaths recorded recently were as a result of disease,” he said. “We have right now sent a team of experts to the three affected towns to conduct investigations into their death tolls.”

According to Lawan, health experts will also follow trends and interview relatives of those who died, before consulting with other medical experts on ground.

While speaking on health workers’ capacities, Lawan disclosed that the personal protective equipment (PPE) have also been procured with the commencement of training health workers in 17 local government areas.

“They will use them in hospitals and COVID-19 isolation centers to protect both patients and the frontline health workers,” he said.

He said the state government is strictly adhering to “standard health procedures” in dealing with COVID-19, so as to prevent panic among public.

“The Yobe state government is committed to protecting people’s lives no matter their status and where they live,” Lawan said, noting that government is learning from the mistakes of other states in fighting the coronavirus pandemic.

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