The Edo State Government has reiterated the need for residents to be cautious and observe all safety and health protocols against the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) amid rise in confirmed cases of the virus in the state.

The Permanent Secretary, Edo State Ministry of Health, Dr. Osamwonyi Irowa, disclosed this while briefing journalists in Benin City, the state capital, on the impact of COVID-19 in the state.

According to him, “Edo State, in the last 24 hours, recorded 29 new cases of coronavirus, 16 recoveries with 645 active cases who are currently receiving treatment at various isolation and treatment centres in the state.”

He added that Edo has, since December 1, 2020 when the state started tracking the second wave of the pandemic, collected 10,893 samples and recorded 1,195 confirmed cases, 523 recoveries and 32 deaths.

Decrying the alarming rise in number of confirmed cases in the state, Irowa noted that “17 local government areas in the state have been affected with the virus. We are doing active case search and intensifying sample collection and testing across the state.”

He continued: “We are supporting and collaborating with the federal institutions. We are putting up structure for Irrua Hospital to help manage cases and render services to people affected by the virus in Edo North and Central. We are doing same in Auchi General Hospital.”

Irowa said the state’s COVID-19 enforcement team is doing their best to ensure that the people of the state comply with government’s directive and NCDC protocol to curtail the spread of the disease.

Reassuring that Governor Godwin Obaseki is committed to curbing the spread of the virus in the state, the Permanent Secretary added, “we will do our best to collaborate with the governor in ensuring that the state is safe for all.”

“Schools across the state have resumed and our joint monitoring team, which includes security, health officials and those in the education sector, are going round to ensure that basic, secondary schools and higher Institutions comply with various guidelines and protocols against the spread of the second wave of the pandemic,” he added.