The South South zone of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), has lauded governors in the oil rich region for putting up robust strategy in combating the spread of COVID-19 in the area.
Mr Emmanuel Ogidi, the National Vice Chairman of the party in the zone, gave the commendation in a statement he issued on Friday.
He described the governors as “proactive leaders”, who placed high regard on the interest of the people and are committed to ensuring the security and welfare of citizens.
Ogidi said that before the index case of COVID-19 was announced in the zone, governors in the region had ensured strategic preventive and control measures.
“I want to commend all our governors in the South South region for the resilient fight put up against COVID-19, they have done so well and we must commend them.”
“They have displayed capacity and are still showing capacity, as it in line with our campaign promises and the people can see and feel it.”
“Their leadership style had ensure peace in the creeks of the Niger Delta and they have extended that leadership skill to the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic and we can see the results.”
“I am so far satisfied and I am sure, with the cooperation of the people, we shall defeat the virus in no distant time,’’ he said.
Ogidi particularly lauded the Cross River Gov., Prof. Ben Ayade who he said had displayed leadership by putting up formidable team and strategy and as well ensured that there is no recorded confirmed case of the virus in the state.
The chieftain said that in addition to other preventive measures in place, the governor had embarked on aggressive production of face masks for citizen in the state and workers in the frontline.
Ogidi noted that Ayade who is a Professor of Science, was about the only governor who believed that the cure to the virus could be developed locally, by getting anti bodies from those who had recovered.
The chieftain also stated that Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers was one of the first to declare a border lockdown to prevent the spread of the virus into the state.
He said the governor went on to put in place, isolation centres and treatment facilities as well as provided palliatives for the people across all Local Government Areas irrespective of party, tribe or creed.
Ogidi said Wike ensured strict compliance and enforcement of the lockdown order irrespective of social stratification as seen in the case of Caverton helicopter and ExxonMobil.
The PDP stalwart further recalled that Gov. Ifanyi Okowa of Delta, had on April 1, declared a 14- day lockdown in the state and later extended it in a bid to defeat the virus.
The chairman said that Okowa had ensured palliatives measures for the citizens and also strict compliance, in accordance with the guidelines which he said, were in line with International standards.
Ogidi said just like other governors in the region, Sen. Diri Douye of Bayelsa had also made available, isolation facilities in the state.
According to him, Gov. Diri has embarked on sanitisation in public places such as markets and public buildings in the state, to prevent the spread of the COVID-19.
The stalwart said that the Bayelsa governor has also embarked on a massive public enlightenment campaign in rural areas and had also ordered a lockdown to prevent the spread of the pandemic.
He added tha the governor has canvassed for free flow of food and pharmaceuticals into the state and across the country as Nigerians stay at home.
On Gov. Godwin Obaseki of Edo State, the chieftain noted that Obaseki had done his best in controlling the virus from spreading, saying that there was need to do more.
He added that Edo had the highest number of 44 confirmed cases in the South South and that something must be done to salvage the situation in the state.
According to Ogidi, the PDP is preparing to the take over power in the state in the forthcoming governorship election, to deliver dividends of democracy to the people.
The vice chairman urged citizens in the oil rich zone to also cooperate with their leaders and health authorities, to prevent the virus from spreading any further.
He urged them to strictly comply with safety measures of social and physical distancing, regular hand washing with soap and water and to always wear face masks if they must come out of their houses.
The chieftain said that he understood the difficulties that came with the lockdown, urging the citizens to consider all difficulties as a sacrifice to defeat the ugly virus.
As at the time of filing this report, confirmed COVID-19 cases in the zone are, Akwa Ibom 16, Bayelsa five, Cross River nill, Delta nine, Edo 44 and Rivers 13.