Following the increase in the number of Coronavirus cases in Abia State, residents have been reacting to the news that three of the cases were people who returned from other states.
Radio Nigeria sampled the opinion of some residents on the issue and what the state government was doing to tighten the borders, which were ordered to be closed down.
On Monday, May 18, 2020, Governor Okezie Ikpeazu in a news briefing, announced that Abia State had five new cases of Coronavirus disease, taking the number of active cases in the area to six.
The Governor said three of the new cases were returnees from Lagos and reemphasized the need for total closure of inter state borders, which was one of the measures put in place to curb the spread of the infectious disease.
The development has continued to generate reactions among residents who expressed reservations with the situation of things at the borders.
Speaking with Radio Nigeria, a resident, Mr. Anthony Obasi, expressed dissatisfaction over the porosity of the borders and urged the state government and security agencies to adapt more proactive measures to address the situation.
Another respondent, Mrs. Uche Oriaku, while commending the government for it’s efforts towards curbing the spread of coronavirus, called on the government to pay more attention to the borders to ensure maximum compliance.
Other respondents, including Mr. Ugochukwu Paul, stressed the need for the Governor and other government officials to pay regular visits to the borders to forestall easy movement of people.
Reacting to the issue in a telephone chat, the Abia State Commissioner for Homeland Security, Prince Dan Okoli, lamented that they were experiencing a lot of challenges with pedestrians, who walked across the borders.
Prince Okoli, however, pointed out that to tackle the problem, the Governor had directed traditional rulers and Transition Committee Chairmen of Local Governments to help in cordoning routes through which people crossed the borders in their domain.
He urged residents and indigenes, who were not in the state but wanted to come back, to remain where they were as the ailment does not respect anybody, adding that they should stay safe at their present location.