The Lagos State government, yesterday, confirmed that five additional patients, who have recovered from coronavirus, COVID-19, have been discharged, from Infectious Disease Centre, Yaba Mainland Hospital.
Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Mr. Gbenga Omotosho, when contacted through his mobile phone, confirmed the report, saying: "Yes, I'm aware. Five coronavirus patients, who have fully recovered from the disease after treatment, were set to be discharged from isolation centre today (yesterday).
"The state government has concluded all arrangements to reintegrate the patients into the society. But, I know by now the patients are supposed to be in their respective homes.
"However, the state government will issue a statement very soon. It's a great thing of joy."
Omotoso appealed to residents to adhere strictly to guidelines on prevention of COVID-19, particularly, on social-distancing, washing of hands regularly, and hand sanitiser, covering of mouth with tissue when coughing or sneezing into a bent elbow, among others, saying:"We will win the war together."
Patients relieve experiences
However, some of the five coronavirus patients, who were reportedly discharged, have narrated their experiences from the disease.
With the latest discharges, it brings to eight the total number of discharged patients from the centre.
The discharged patients, who preferred annonimity, expressed joy and satisfaction over the treatments they received.
While commending Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State for his support and pro-activeness, they pleaded that workers at the centre be given life insurance.
While speaking to journalists, one of the patients said: "I came in here on the 15th and after the test showed positive, I was asked to come back the next day. So, I was admitted here.
"Initially, there were hitches but it later turned out fine. The health workers did fine, all our challenges were attended to. I'm a living witness with my other colleagues."
He gave an impressive hope, saying people should not panic as the virus could be defeated.
"We can beat it, I want to assure others that this is not their resting place. Encourage yourselves, take your medications and in no distant time, you will get out of here.
"I want to appeal to the Federal Government and Lagos State government that, they should remunerate all those workers who have volunteered to work accordingly so as to serve as encouragement to others, adding: "If they are not here as first responders, many would have died."
Another patient said: "I was admitted last Sunday. Initially there were challenges, the following day, they brought bed, mask and some equipment.
"Apart from what my colleague said, the workers should be insured. Proper insurance will let people do what they have to do.
He narrated a scenario where the workers could not attend to him because he tested positive, saying: "They went back and I slept off, I woke up around 3 a.m. So they deserve life insurance to encourage them to do their job."
Meanwhile, attempt to get the Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi to confirm the development was unsuccessful at press time.
However, a senior government officials at Governor's Office, who preferred anonymity, confirmed the report, saying: "The governor directed some media crew to speak with the discharged patients for public knowledge."
LASG receives N1bn UBA donation
Earlier, yesterday, Governor Sanwo-Olu, on behalf of the state government, received a cheque for N1billion from the United Bank for Africa, UBA, as part of the bank's commitment to help curb the devastating effects of COVID-19 in the state.
Presenting the cheque to the governor at the State House, Marina, Managing Director of the bank, Mr. Kenneth Uzoka, said the N1 billion donation was also in fulfilment of the N5 billion commitment made by the UBA Group Chairman, Mr. Tony Elumelu, last week.
Uzoka said as a socially responsible institution, UBA cares for its communities and for Lagos State, which has recorded the highest number of positive cases thus far, needing special attention.
He disclosed that the decision to give Lagos N1 billion was as a result of the important role that the state plays in the economy of not only Nigeria, but Africa as a whole, given its vast population and other key economic factors.
He said: "Given the population of this state and that it is the business nerve centre, we at UBA are committed to lending our support to the state government. So today, we are giving you and the state one billion naira to support your endeavour in fighting the Coronavirus disease.
"I will not fail to mention that this wasn't an easy decision for us because Lagos is just one of the many states in Nigeria. However, we looked at the importance of Lagos to Nigeria, but more importantly, we looked at the fact that Lagos has set up the right structure to administer whatever it is that we are giving to the state. So, we are rest assured, because we believe without an iota of doubt that the state will use these funds effectively and efficiently,"
The governor expressed appreciation to the financial institution for the support, saying that the money would go a long way to assist the state in kicking out the pandemic.
He said: "We appreciate UBA. This is not the kind of money that we would want to take for granted. This is really an important intervention and this fund will go a long way to meet all of our needs both now and in the future, to ensure that Lagos continues to remain safe for business.
"And so, we are indeed happy that you decided to make this very bold move to support the health facility infrastructure in Lagos. You can be rest assured that once the structures have been developed, we will call you again to see what we have put these resources to."
Last week, the bank announced a donation of over 5 billion Naira (USD14 million), through the UBA Foundation, to catalyse a comprehensive pan-African response to the fight against the coronavirus (COVID-19) global pandemic.