It has come to our notice that our people experience some challenges in bringing home the remains of our dear brothers and sisters who died outside Anambra State in recent times for burial.
We have also read the news of how the vehicles conveying the remains of our fallen brothers and sisters had waited at the boundaries for long hours, including all the hazards this situation had posed to them.
Much as this is inconveniencing, it is borne out of a genuine effort of the Anambra State government to keep the citizens safe and the State free from COVID-19.
Our findings have revealed that the state government has through its Ministry of Health come up with guidelines for scrutinizing each convoy in order to ascertain the cause of death as well as ensure that persons accompanying such corpses do not bring COVID-19 into Anambra State.
This is to avoid any slip or error that may be catastrophic to the general wellbeing of the people.
The guidelines were designed essentially in line with the requirements of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
The guidelines include:
1. All persons escorting remains of our brothers and sisters must declare what the cause of death was and support it with evidence of a duly-signed death certificate issued by relevant health authorities in the state where the person died.
2. Everybody accompanying the corpse must give their contact details to the Anambra State Government health authorities for follow-up in a 14-day quarantine protocol.
3. All corpses coming into Anambra State must be buried the same day they were brought into the state. The family members should make a commitment to this by getting the grave ready before the arrival of the corpse.
4. The burial must be supervised by staff of the Anambra State Ministry of Health.
5. All funeral ceremonies should hold without fanfare, and not more than 30 persons should be in attendance, maintaining strictly guidelines on social distancing and wearing of face masks in the process.
To ensure that the above guidelines are implemented seamlessly, the state government has deployed experienced medical personnel to all entry points into the state to among other things facilitate the implementation of these guidelines and ensure accelerated clearance of corpses into Anambra State.
Sincerely speaking, the above guidelines serve the greater interest of our people when juxtaposed parri passu with the current global realities.
We wish to assure the people of Anambra State and our teeming supporters that the APGA government of Governor Willie Obiano has remained ahead of the rest of the country in designing and releasing guidelines for the sustained fight against the dreaded COVID-19.
This has come at no small cost to the state.
However, they have become necessary in the interest of our people at this time.
We wish to advise our people to continue to show understanding and cooperation at this critical time of our national life.
Those that play politics with everything under the sun, even when the times do not need it, should show restraint and work in concert with the state government to continue to make Anambra State truly the Light of the Nation and free from the rampaging COVID-19.
Ozonkpu Dr. Victor Oye,
©2020 Publication of APGA New Media