Governor Simon Lalong, during flag off of fumigation of Plateau state against COVID-19.

By M. Peter – Jos

The ongoing fumigation exercise in Plateau state which is a preventive measure against COVID-19 is to be effective for one month even as officials say the chemicals used will kill viruses, bacteria, pests and germs.

The state government which declared a six-day lockdown starting from Thursday midnight, yesterday commenced the fumigation which is to be carried out in the 17 local government areas of the State.

Susan Bentu, the Managing Director, Agricultural Services Training Center, ASTC, a government agency saddled with the responsibility of carrying out the fumigation said though there is no case of COVID-19 in the state, there is need to ensure the disease is kept out.

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Flagging off the exercise at the Terminus area of Jos North local government area, the State Governor, Simon Lalong, noted that since the outbreak of the disease, his administration has taken several steps to prevent its spread to the State and called for citizens’ continued support to contain the disease.

“Our mission here is to begin the fumigation of the entire state against the Coronavirus. Since the outbreak of the disease, our Government has taken several steps aimed at ensuring that the disease does not come into the State.

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“Although no case has been recorded yet in Plateau state, we cannot relax. We have to remain vigilant and proactive. The entire state will be fumigated, all public places such as markets, streets, office premises among others will be fumigated. I call on all our citizens to stay at home in line with the directive we have issued in order to achieve the aim of this exercise.

“In addition to the fumigation, the lockdown will also help us reduce any tendency for inter- state transfer of the disease and enable us respond appropriately to any suspected case and contact tracing. We shall be getting a Testing Centre here in Plateau State in the coming days, which will also boost our capacity to identify any case faster.”

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Lalong called for prayers for the state from both the Christian and Muslim community in the state, added that the government will roll out palliatives to cushion the impact of the sit -at – home.

Meanwhile, the lockdown was effective as residents were indoors and all major roads deserted as security agencies mount roadblocks to ascertain the identities of essential workers who are not restricted by the lockdown.