With 48 hours to the Valentine’s Day celebration, the Nigeria Medical Association has urged the Enugu State Government to ensure strick enforcement of the COVID-19 protocols.
The Association said the alarm became necessary in view of the influx of people into the State ahead of February 14.
In a statement on Friday, signed by the Chairman, Rtn. Dr. J.O.T. Onyia and the Secretary, Dr. Aloy Ugwuoke, they advised that all forms of carnivals should be cancelled by the State Government.
The statement read: “The NMA Enugu State leadership under Rtn Dr J.O.T. Onyia wishes to raise alarm over the rising cases of COVID 19 infection and COVID 19 related deaths in Enugu State with the ongoing inimical second wave of COVID 19 Infection.
“Consequent upon this, NMA Enugu advises the Enugu State Government ably led by RT Hon Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to enforce immediate strict adherence to COVID 19 protocol during the forthcoming Valentine’s Day Celebration of 14th February, 2021, so as to curtail the rising cases of COVID 19 infections and COVID 19 related deaths in the State in the aftermath of the celebration.
“Enugu state will definitely experience a massive influx of Valentine celebrants this weekend from neighbouring states with a consequential projected massive seedling of COVID 19 if the Presidential orders and NCDC guidelines are not observed.
“Most hotels in Enugu will be fully booked by weekend. Furthermore, most entertainment spots and other places of outing like Shop Rite, SPAR Enugu, clubs etc should be expecting large crowds that will definitely breach infection prevention protocols.
“NMA Enugu makes this call against the background that the health facilities and personnels in Enugu state are near overwhelmed by the increased incidence in symptomatic COVID 19 related cases and deaths, where also majority of the health workers and their relatives in Enugu State are down with COVID 19 infection contracted inadvertently while attending the COVID 19 patients in the State.
“We cannot afford to encourage circumstances and events geared towards circumventing COVID 19 IPC protocols as approved by the Federal Government, especially in the face of fast spreading community acquired COVID-19 infections caused by the more virulent strain of COVID 19 virus.
“The NMA Enugu State advises the Enugu State Government ably led by RT HON. Ifeanyi Ugwuanyi to immediately cancel all carnivals and mass gatherings during this upcoming VALENTINE’S day celebration in order to reduce the community spread of COVID 19 infections.
“We also advise the Governor to liaise with NMA Enugu and other allied professional medical associations to set up a COVID 19 committee and a COVID 19 response team that will formulate local policies that will reduce the community spread of this current COVID 19 infection that is caused by a virulent strain of COVID 19 virus.”