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Emir dies in Zamfara, lawmaker in Nasarawa

THE rise in new cases of  COVID-19 (Coronavirus)  in  the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) as well as deaths in Kano, Nasarawa and Zamfara are heightening anxiety among residents of Abuja and the three states.

FCT’s COVID- cases rose to 266 Saturday from 178 on Friday.  It is third to Lagos, the epicentre of the contagion, which  had 1,068 cases as of Sunday morning..

Nasarawa State, which shares border with the FCT, lost a member of its House of Assembly at the weekend, a development that led to his colleagues and their families proceeding on a 14-day isolation.

Also, Kano, which is reeling under mass deaths, lost another academic, Prof. Isa Hashim,while Zamfara also lost the  Emir of Kaura-Namoda, Mohammed Asha, on Sunday.

The   Nasarawa lawmaker and the emir are believed to have died of COVID-19  complications. The cause of the former university teacher is unknown.

Amid the fears in the three states and the FCT, every discharged Coronavirus patient in Lagos has  been  advised to stay at home or isolate for 14 days.

“This pandemic is becoming more  scary with the raise in the new cases. We need to be very careful now and obey government and medical rules especially as the lockdown is being eased from today,” said one of the residents.

FCT Minister, Muhammad Bello, however enjoined them to comply strictly  with the guidelines on easing of the lockdown as that was the only way to ensure that the pandemic is  contained.

At the same time, he warned that “anybody who, for any reason, flouts the directives of government and is arrested, the full wrath of the law will fall on him  or her.”

The Minister stated that security agencies would deploy additional personnel and resources to all the FCT entry points   to ensure that the enforcement of the guidelines.

A statement  by Bello’s  Chief Press Secretary, Anthony Ogunleye, explained that  ”offices in the FCT are open for specific categories of staff on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays  within a specific time range of 8am  and  2pm.”

In Lafia, Governor Abdullahi Sule ordered  the shutdown of the Nasarawa State House of Assembly following  the sudden death of a member ,  Adamu Sulieman, from  COVID-19 complications.

He also directed the other lawmakers, their families and staff   members of the House to  quarantine immediately.

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Sulieman was said to have taken ill last Thursday and his blood sample was taken and sent to the Federal Medical Centre in  Keffi.

He died in the early hours of Friday and was buried immediately according to lslamic rites. His result which was returned  on Sunday by the  National Centre for Disease Control(NCDC) positive  .

Majority of the 23-member Assembly, friends and other associates of Suleiman attended the burial

Governor Sule also disclosed that the state had recorded nine confirmed cases of the pandemic with one death. He added  that 11 of persons that had  contact with the index  case tested negative for the virus.

Sule said his government had  evacuated about 788 Almajiris back to their home states as part of its efforts to prevent the  spread of the disease.

The  governor was physically present  at the Government Science School, Lafia to  bid  the Almajiris  farewell in  air conditioned buses  to Plateau, Gombe, Kaduna, Taraba and Jigawa states

Zamfara State Publicity Secretary for the Control and Prevention of COVID-19, Alhaji Mustafa Jafaru Kaura, said that Emir Asha died on Sunday while in isolation at the Yariman Bakura Specialist Hospital.

He explained that  Asha’s  blood sample was  sent to Abuja for COVID-19 test but that he   died  before the result could be out.

He said the remains of the Emir were still in the hospital waiting for burial by officials of the NCDC.

Hashim, a former university teacher, was until his death yesterday senior Counsellor in Kano Emirate Council  and  the  Jarman Kano.  He was 86.

A family source, Ibrahim Aliyu  the heath of the  traditional title holder  started  deteriorating following the deaths of some of his childhood friends in quick succession in the Emirate.

Hashim, a Professor of Political Science, was a senior lecturer with Bayero University Kano (BUK)   for many years before his retirement.

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