We’ll End Kidnapping And Insecurity In Oyo, Makinde Vows

 

The Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde has declared that his government will do everything possible to end kidnapping and insecurity in the state.

This Makinde says will be done by working with all security agencies including the newly-introduced Oyo State Security Network Agency also known as Amotekun Corps.

The governor maintained that the safety and security of all residents of the state remains a top priority for his government, adding that his administration will work relentlessly to tackle cases of kidnapping and insecurity.

Governor Makinde, who appreciated all heads of security agencies for doing their best to secure the state, explained that the government is already setting up proper information channels for security agencies in the state in order for them to keep the information flow simple.

The governor stated these while briefing newsmen at the Government House, Agodi, Ibadan, on Wednesday, adding that the government will go ahead to implement the N500 million MSME fund and employment of 5,000 young persons into government agencies as well as the engagement of youths into direct labour schemes to tackle youth restiveness in the state.

He said: “The safety and security of all residents of Oyo State remain our top priority. We will continue to work relentlessly to tackle cases of kidnapping and insecurity in our state.

“We are also putting in place other policies to address insecurity, especially with regards to youth restiveness. Last year, after the ENDSARS protests, we talked about three things that we will be doing to reduce youth unemployment and improve the security situation in the state.

“We talked about the N500 million MSME fund that we will set up, employment opportunities for 5,000 young persons across all government agencies and the provision for the direct labour agency. We could not do all of these towards the end of last year because we had budgetary constraints.

“But now, we have put these schemes in this year’s budget and we should be implementing them as scheduled this year.”

Governor Makinde, who warned that some individuals who want Amotekun to fail had been assailing it with all sorts of misinformation and fake news, maintained that the community policing model remains the only way to solve the insecurity challenge in the country.

He stated that the state will not sit idly and watch any Amotekun operative operate outside the ambitions of the law and that it would also not yield to blackmail against the new agency.

He added that the state has identified that there is presently some friction between the Amotekun and Nigerian Police in the state, adding that the state will set up a committee to iron out the frosty relationship between the two institutions and bring about an alignment in their operations.

“Amotekun is not operating in a vacuum. They are a creation of the law of the state. The Nigerian Police is a creation of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. It is normal that we have inter and intra agency friction where possible, but we will get everybody together and seek alignment towards the same end basically,” the governor said.

He added: “For the past six weeks that the Amotekun was deployed, we have seen various reports in the news. Most of these reports are good and a few are bad. And of the bad, quite a number are false information and fake news.

“For example, some newspapers carried the news that Amotekun killed 7 fulani herdsmen in Ibarapa. “Such a story was circulated to stoke ethnic tension. Even some reputable media fell for this. Whereas, the real story was that Amotekun worked with the community members, including genuine herdsmen to flush out bad elements in that zone.

“It has, therefore, become necessary to put the good people of Oyo State on high alert.

“Each time you see a news item, you want to ask yourself if it is believable or just some no-good-people at work.

“I have to tell you that there are people among us that don’t want Amotekun to succeed and they will use lies and disinformation to push their agenda. We must realise where we are coming from and where we really want to be.

“Community policing is the way forward and we have to make it work. If somebody says he is abused by Amotekun and cannot pinpoint the Amotekun personnel in such an area, you are probably not from that neighborhood and you are a fake news carrier.

“So, as I always say, I know we do have trust-deficit between the people and the authorities, and this makes it easier to think the worst of people in authority. But we should not cut our nose to spite our face. We must find a balance so that we do not turn the people trying to protect us to our enemies.”

The governor charged anyone with a genuine case against the members of the Amotekun Corps to come forward with their grievances by using any of the feedback channels put in place by the government.

The governor equally warned traditional rulers and village heads against allocating lands to undocumented foreigners, stating that some undocumented individuals had been contributing to insecurity in the state.

He added that the state will soon provide documentation for these individuals and especially miners and motorcycle/tricycle operators, saying: “So, we are going to be providing some documentation for them. Those who work in the mining site will be documented and a Task Force is being set up to do this. We will also be meeting with the heads of the association of Amalgamated Commercial Motorcycle and Tricycle Owners, Repairers and Riders Association of Nigeria (ACOMORAN).

“I also understand that they also have a breakaway faction in Oyo State. Well, we will be reaching out to the two of them to ensure that we get them registered. So, this will go a long way to address how some people are hiding under their platform to commit crimes.

“The option is very simple for us. It is either you get registered and we know who are the operators or we regulate your operation. We can say that after 6 p.m., we don’t want to see okadas and tricycles on our streets. We have the power to do that but how does that affect our economy? I personally believe that they are filling a gap. If demands exist, we want them to maximise the gains coming from their operation.

“But if they would not register their people, we will be left with no choice than to just regulate the hours in which they operate. So, I am hopeful that they will cooperate with us by getting their people registered.”

Similarly, the governor addressed the resurgence in cases of COVID-19 in the state and the country, saying that the virus is still very much in the state and that residents must continue to adhere to the protocols to prevent the spread while also following the food advisory once released by the state to boost their immune system.

He advised that individuals must show responsibility by owning their actions.
According to Governor Makinde, the data available to the state are not showing a second wave of the virus as the curve was never flattened, explaining that the state tested about 20,000 samples of people who were mostly sick or had direct contact with those who had the virus between March and December 2020 with about 3,000 testing positive.

He stated that the state has equally conducted about 14,000 tests on people including those not showing any symptom based on the NCDC guidelines between early December and January 2021 and that 696 tested positive.

In all, he said that the state has conducted more than 34,000 covid-19 tests.
He said: “With recent happenings and talks on the second wave of Covid-19, it becomes necessary that I address you. Let me start by talking about the issue of this supposed second wave. I have always said that all our responses to covid-19 in Oyo State will be guided by data, science, and logic. So, as far as Oyo State is concerned, the data we have is not pointing to a second wave as the curve was never flattened.

“The data says COVID-19 is still very much with us. Science is telling us that we can slow down the spread by taking precautions. So, the logical thing to do is to follow what science dictates. We know how difficult the year 2020 was for a lot of us. So, logically, we should not do things that will make the situation worse. This is not the time to let down our guard. If anything, we should not take any of the precautions lightly.

“In the last month, we have unfortunately had eight deaths. Even though many people have mild to moderate symptoms, it is severe for a few, and since we do not know who it will be severe, we need to keep our guard up.

“On our part, we are doing everything within our power to provide more resources for the EOC to continue to manage the spread of this disease. We are facilitating greater collaborations between the laboratories, the University College Hospital, Ibadan, and our Infectious Disease Centre at Olodo. We are also carrying out training for private clinics/hospitals so they can follow the right protocols.

“For those who may need oxygen, we are signing an MOU with a firm for supply of oxygen and the use of their facilities if need be. They already have facilities in the state and they are providing oxygen at UCH. So, we are just asking them to factor Oyo State into their production schedule.”

While speaking on the issue of COVID-19 vaccines, the governor maintained that the 1,800 vaccines allocated to the state by the Federal Government are inadequate, stating that the state will engage manufacturers of Astra-Zeneca Vaccines when finally certified fit for human consumption, as it has been said to be more suitable for the state because of its storage instructions.

“On the issue of vaccines, the Federal Government, from what we read, has allocated 1,800 vaccines for Oyo State. First, in Oyo State, we don’t have a facility to store at minus 70 centigrade. Again, this number is grossly inadequate. If you want to vaccinate 100,000 people out of a population of almost 200 million, it is not going to make any dent.

“And Oyo State, which is a population of between 7-12million, 1,800 vaccines are not going to go anywhere. So, we are exploring other means of getting these vaccines to our people.

“I have been advised by the experts that the Astra-Zeneca Vaccine is more suitable for Oyo State due to storage instructions. So, we are opening discussions directly with the manufacturer so that we can get as many as possible for our people once it is certified. For now, the protocol remains the same. Professor Alonge and his team will continue to manage the COVID-19 situation for us but what I will say to everyone is, you have to own your action. I have to own my action too.”

Makinde Mourns Ex-UNILAG VC Professor Ibidapo-Obe

Late Professor Ibidapo-Obe

 

Governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, has described the death of the Pro-Chancellor of the Technical University, Ibadan, and former Vice-Chancellor of the University of Lagos, Professor Oye Ibidapo-Obe, as a great loss to the state, Nigeria and the academic world. 

The governor condoled with the immediate family of the late don, who was his lecturer at UNILAG, the UNILAG community, and the Tech-U management.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa, quoted Makinde as stating that the late Ibidapo-Obe was a teacher’s teacher and an administrator per excellence, who made great marks on Nigeria’s education sector.

He added that the former vice-chancellor’s death came at a time his wealth of experience and sterling knowledge of education management are needed by the state and the country.

“The news of the death of my uncle and lecturer, Prof. Oye Ibidapo-Obe, came as a rude shock. But we submit to the will of God and pray that the Almighty grants repose to his soul.

“I also condole with the family he left behind, the UNILAG community where he was a partner in progress for decades, the management of the  Technical University and, indeed, the Nigerian academia.

“Oyo State and Nigeria have lost a great man, a teacher’s teacher and an administrator of note, who made great marks as an engineering teacher and university administrator.

“It is my prayer that God will uphold everyone he left behind and grant us all the fortitude to bear the loss of the erudite scholar.

“Good night, dear Prof.”

Makinde Meets With Youths, Calls For Peace

A file photo of Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde.
A file photo of Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde.

 

The Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde, on Tuesday, met with drivers, and representatives of the youth groups, asking them to work together to bring back peace in the state.

Governor Makinde also met with representatives of #EndSARS protesters, stating that every resident has a duty to ensure peace because “the opportunity to go about our businesses and activities must be protected.”

He said that the meeting was to ensure the buy-in of all stakeholders to ensure that the Police return to their duty posts immediately, as according to him, a society without security is heading towards anarchy.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr. Taiwo Adisa,  the governor as saying that despite the recent protest against Police brutality and demand for a better country, which he said was a worthy cause, people must know that the Police and the people would have to come together to build a better society together.

He said: “Our Police will come back now. Somebody talked about State Police. Well, that is a constitutional issue. We are putting the request forward because members of the State House of Assembly are here. Oyo State alone cannot make the reforms.

“But while we are waiting for that, Oyo State has passed a law for the operation of Amotekun. Only yesterday (Monday), I signed off for them to immediately recruit 1,500 personnel. They have conducted an interview and I am sure that that personnel will start their training by the 1st of November and we will have the passing out for them about the 15th of November.

“We have 351 wards in Oyo State and I give you the assurance that you will see an Amotekun operative in all the wards in the state. They will work hand in hand with the Police authority, but they will also report to me directly. And I will take the responsibility for their actions. If any Amotekun operative in any corner of Oyo State behaves unruly, hold me accountable.

“So, I want you all to go back, support our traditional rulers. Let the people know that both the Police and the people have to come together, work together and build a better society together.”

The governor, who also stated that the state government decided to set up platforms for reporting police brutality and right abuses, said that the measure would fast-track the job of the Judicial Panel of Inquiry, which he said will be inaugurated next week.

He stated that 46 persons have so far reported infractions and rights abuses, adding the representatives of the youths and artisans will serve on the panel of inquiry.

Governor Makinde also said that in order to ensure accountability, the government had decided that representatives of youth organisations and the artisan groups present would also serve on the panel that will oversee the disbursement of the 500 Million Naira Victim Compensation Fund for victims of Police brutality and his administration’s N500 Million for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs) support fund for youths.

He said: “I have listened to the #EndSARS representatives and also listened to that of the artisans, okada riders and Micra operatives. One thing that came out of the presentation you made is, the government will come and go but our state will remain. So, I will say it is not how long but how well. What can we do to ensure we are doing the right thing in our state and environment?

“The peace, security, and the opportunity to go about our businesses and activities must be protected. And that is why I have called this meeting. We need you, the artisans, okada riders, youths, and even the EndSARS protesters, to come together and protect our state and tackle the challenges before us. That is why I called this meeting to seek your buy-in; to have you take ownership of the policies that we are rolling out and to also make you part of that process.”

According to him, the demographics in the state and the country show that youths are much and some of them are well-read, noting that the government has to engage them and that this is what his government stands for.

“As we are expanding our economy, a lot more people will be taken from poverty to prosperity. We have made the plans, put some things together but we only need your cooperation to have that done,” the governor said.

He assured Taxi drivers and Motorcycle riders that their request for mitigation of offences as well as the request for tax certificates have been received, adding that the state government would standardize their operations and ensure a better working environment for them.

The governor added: “I need to also tell you that at Gate, there is a programme we are organizing for the Okada riders. Any money we collect from you Okada riders and Micra operatives will be accounted for and we will plough it back to make things better for you. The project will be completed very soon, maybe in a few weeks’ time. Once we have ourselves organized, our problem is half solved.

“The youths asked for a sense of belonging, but I already addressed it. Concerning the N500m I earmarked, you will be a part of the people that will monitor the disbursement.”

While speaking at the event, the Speaker of Oyo State House of Assembly, Rt. Hon. Debo Ogundoyin said that youths need to be involved in politics to ensure things run properly.

He demanded constitution review, review of the 2014 national confab report, review of Exclusive Legislative List and the Electoral Act to guarantee accountability.

Former Commissioner of Police in Lagos State, who is also the Special Adviser to the governor on Security, Fatai Owoseni (Rtd), asked the youths to constructively engage the system, adding that they cannot be complaining about police brutality and extra-judicial killing while also perpetuating the same wrongdoing.

“2023 is very close, let’s register to vote and use our votes to make Nigeria a better place,” the retired Police Commissioner said.

Edo 2020: Wike, Tambuwal, Makinde Other PDP Leaders Gather In Benin

 

Leaders of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) including Rivers State Governor Nyesom Wike; Sokoto State Governor Aminu Tambuwal; Oyo State Governor Seyi Makinde, among others are currently in Benin, Edo State capital campaigning for Governor Godwin Obaseki.

The leaders are gathered at the Samuel Ogbemudia Stadium in Benin City for the party’s mega rally ahead of Edo State gubernatorial election.

Spokesperson of the party, Kola Ologbondiyan at the rally appreciated supporters for massively supporting Obaseki.

READ ALSO: Candidates Sign Peace Accord Ahead Edo Election

Other leaders at the event include Akwa Ibom State Governor Udom Emmanuel; former Imo State Governor Emeka Ihedioha; Delta State Governor Ifeanyi Okowa; Raymond Dopkepsi, among others.

The party’s vice-presidential candidate in the 2019 presidential election also at the event urged the electorate to troop out and vote Obaseki on September 19, the date of the election.

Uche Secondus, PDP National Chairman in his speech said victory is assured for Obaseki considering the number of bigwigs who have thrown their weight behind him.

‘You Are A Royal Pillar’, Makinde Celebrates Olubadan At 92

Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde

 

The Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, has felicitated with the Olubadan of Ibadanland, Oba Saliu Adetunji, (Aje Ogungunniso I), as he clocks 92.

Makinde, in a statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr Taiwo Adisa on Wednesday stated that the foremost monarch “personifies greatness and honour.”

He added that the tenure of the monarch, who he described as a royal pillar and custodian of Ibadan’s great values, rich history and tradition, has witnessed huge successes, unprecedented growth and development in his domain.

The statement quoted the governor as saying: “On behalf of the government of Oyo State, the sons and daughters of Ibadanland and the good people of Oyo State, I celebrate our revered father and monarch, the Olubadan of Ibadanland, His Imperial Majesty, Oba Saliu Adetunji, Aje Ogungunniso 1,  on his 92nd birthday.

“Kabiyesi has been our royal pillar and custodian of the great values, rich history and tradition of our people.

“His tenure has coincided with huge successes, unprecedented growth and development of his domain.

“Oba Adetunji has continued to personify greatness, honour and candour and he has continued to be an exemplar as a royal father and elder.

“Kabiyesi, as you add another year, may the Almighty God uphold you and imbue you with good health and agility to continue to lead your people.”

 

Another Executive Council Member Contracts COVID-19 In Oyo

 

The Oyo State Governor and Chairman State task force on COVID 19, Governor Seyi Makinde has confirmed that of the two inconclusive results for members of the Oyo State Executive Council, one retest came back positive.

Governor Makinde said 169 COVID-19 cases also received their second negative test results and have been discharged.

Governor Makinde who disclosed this through his verified Twitter Handle said these brings the number of discharged cases in Oyo State to 508.

READ ALSO: Oyo Discharges 169 COVID-19 Patients

He also stated that the COVID-19 confirmation tests for seventy-six suspected cases came back positive.

The cases are from Ibadan SW (35), Oluyole (12), Ibadan N (12), Egbeda (4), Ibadan NW (3), Lagelu (2), Ibadan SE (2), Ibadan NE (2), Akinyele (1), Saki W (1), Ona Ara (1) & Ido (1) LGAs.

“So, the total number of confirmed cases in Oyo State today is 1264.

“Sadly, we had one COVID-19 related death. So, the number of deaths in Oyo State is ten.”

Governor Makinde advised people in the state to keep following the guidelines of the COVID-19 Task Force and ensure slow down in the spread of coronavirus in Oyo state.

Ajimobi’s Burial: This Wicked Lie Must Stop – Makinde

 

The Oyo State Government has strongly denied insinuations that it is responsible for the delay in burying the immediate past governor of the state, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, who died on Thursday.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde, Mr Taiwo Adisa, indicated that the insinuations amounted to a wicked lie.

The statement reads: “In view of the intense enquiries from news media organisations regarding the perceived delay in burying the late former Governor of Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, the Oyo State Government wishes to place on record that there is no truth in the rumour making the rounds that the burial is being delayed by the state government.

“The rumour, which is being deliberately spread to give the state government a bad name and to play undue politics with the dead, initially came by the way of social media gossip, which gained traction to attract the attention of traditional media outfits.

READ ALSO: Another Executive Council Member Contacts COVID-19 In Oyo

“Several media outfits reached out to the Media Office of the Governor of Oyo State to make enquiries on this barefaced lie on Saturday.

“Let it be stated clearly that the Governor of Oyo State, Engineer Seyi Makinde, has played no role at all in causing any delay whatsoever regarding the burial of his immediate predecessor, Senator Ajimobi.

“The truth of the matter is that the family, through a proxy, approached the state government and sought approval to bury the late governor on a plot of land at Agodi GRA, which is currently under litigation.

“Incidentally, it was the same former Governor Ajimobi who instituted the legal action.

“Governor Seyi Makinde had no choice than to state the facts as they are to the emissaries and turn down the request.

“Governor Makinde, however, against the established land use rule in Oyo State, gave approval that the family can bury the late governor in his Oluyole Estate residence.

“It is to be noted that the rules guiding land use in Government Reservation Areas (GRA) forbid the burial of bodies in such locations as Oluyole Estate and Agodi GRA.

“Let us also put on record that whereas the family did not follow the laid down protocols in passing information on the sickness and eventual demise of Senator Ajimobi, Governor Makinde overlooked all that and directed the full cooperation of the government with the family on this matter.

“It can only amount to a wicked lie to insinuate that the incumbent government in Oyo State attempted to obstruct the burial of the immediate past governor.”

Oyo Discharges 169 COVID-19 Patients 

(File) A health worker collects the sample of a man to test for COVID-19. Photo: Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.

 

The Oyo State Government says it has discharged 169 recovered COVID-19 patients from its isolation centre after they were certified negative.

According to Governor Seyi Makinde who made the announcement via his official Twitter handle, the figure raised the number of discharged cases in the state to 508.

READ ALSO: Nigeria Registers Record 779 New COVID-19 Cases As Total Infections Exceed 24,000

He said the COVID-19 confirmation tests for seventy-six suspected cases came back positive.

Regarding the tests conducted on two members of the state executive council, Governor Makinde explained that one returned positive.

Meanwhile, one more death has been recorded, bringing the number of fatalities in the state to 10.

Ajimobi Was A Statesman, Makinde Mourns

A file photo of Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde.

 

The Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde, has expressed sadness at the demise of the immediate past governor of Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi.

The governor, in a condolence message to the Ajimobi family and the good people of Oyo State, also directed that the state’s flag fly at half-mast on Friday.

The condolence message read: “I was so sorry to hear the news of the passing away of the immediate past Governor of Oyo State, Senator Abiola Ajimobi, which sad event took place earlier today.

READ ALSO: Former Oyo State Governor, Senator Ajimobi Dies

“I cannot begin to imagine the pain the family must be going through at this time because of the loss of their patriarch. It is my prayer that God grants them all the strength to bear this great loss.

“I join the good people of Oyo State as we mourn the death of a statesman. I have directed that flags fly at half-mast tomorrow in honour of our brother, friend and illustrious son of Oyo State.

“Surely, he will be remembered for leaving a blueprint for some of the activities that our administration is now undertaking.

“The Oyo State Government will be extending to his family, all the courtesies deserving of his personage.

“May his soul rest in peace.”

Oyo Records Two More COVID-19 Deaths

 

Oyo State Government has announced the death of two more persons in connection to Coronavirus in the state.

Governor Seyi Makinde announced this on Wednesday via his official Twitter handle.

The governor said the patients died last night and this brings the total number of COVID-19 related deaths in the state to six.

He also revealed that 17 persons have recovered from the virus and have since been discharged.

READ ALSO: Rivers Govt Warns Against Attempts To Blackmail NCDC

“Sadly, the two of the six positive cases confirmed today had already passed away and the total number of deaths is now six.

” 17 confirmed COVID-19 patients had received their second negative test results and have been discharged.

“This brings the number of discharged cases in Oyo State to seventy-five,” the governor said.

Six more persons have tested positive for COVID-19 in the state.

“One case is from iSON Xperiences and one each from Ibadan South West, Ibadan South East, Surulere, Ido and Egbeda Local Government Areas,” the governor said.

The total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 infection in Oyo State as at Wednesday, May 27 therefore stands at 250.

Makinde Reviews Curfew As Oyo Coronavirus Cases Hits 233

 

Governor Seyi Makinde has reviewed the curfew in Oyo State, despite some spikes in the number of Coronavirus cases within the state.

The governor had earlier put in place a 7:00 p.m. till 5:00 a.m curfew in the state but this has now been reviewed to 8:00 p.m till 5:00am.

A statement by the Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Mr Taiwo Adisa said that the decision was reached at the COVID-19 Task Force meeting presided over by the governor on Sunday.

He also added that the state has so far recorded 233 COVID-19 positive cases, while 171 of them are active cases.

Adisa assured that a number of creative measures have been approved for implementation by the Emergency Operations Centre (EOC) to contain the spread of the virus in the state.

“The Oyo State COVID-19 Task Force headed by His Excellency, Governor Seyi Makinde has approved that the curfew currently in force in the state runs from 8 p.m. to 5 a.m. The new directive replaces the initial order which pegs the curfew at between 7 p.m. and 5 a.m.

“Agreement has been struck with the management of a facility in Ibadan to provide bed spaces for a number of positive cases, whose status have been well considered by the experts,” his statement read.

He further stated that the government is wrapping up renovations of Isolation centres located at Agbami, Jericho, Ibadan, Igbo-Ora, Ogbomoso, Saki and Aawe, near Oyo town.

He added that the planned community testing, which could not be kickstarted at the weekend owing to the festivities and public holidays, would commence by the end of the week.

Makinde Appeals To NCDC, WHO For Certification Of IITA Testing Centre

A file photo of Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde.

 

Oyo State governor Seyi Makinde has appealed to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and the World Health Organisation for certification of a laboratory located inside International Institute of Tropical Agriculture (IITA) as a testing centre for COVID-19.

He made the appeal on Tuesday while receiving the NCDC management and WHO officials at the Government house in Agodi, Ibadan, Oyo State capital.

Governor Makinde said the request for the approval of the IITA facility was imperative in view of the need to increase the numbers of laboratories in the state going by the large population and the desire to increase testing facilities.

READ ALSO: Sanwo-Olu Unveils 70-Bed Isolation, Treatment Centre For COVID-19

He added that the institution had written letters to the NCDC and the state government in respect of the request for certification of the laboratory.

Makinde said further that Oyo State, as a vast and populated state, require additional laboratories, adding that if Lagos had six certified laboratories by NCDC, then two or three laboratories wouldn’t be bad for Oyo State.

He reiterated the determination of his administration to test at least 10,000 people in the shortest possible time.

The NCDC boss, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu in response expressed satisfaction at the testing centres and infectious disease centre inspected.

He lauded efforts of the state government in containing the pandemic.

“I am impressed with the commitment of the government and all the resources in the state. I am happy that people are coming together across the federal and state institutions in Oyo State. And I think working together with WHO support, the NCDC support and all aspects of the government, we can really create a great example for the country here in Ibadan.

“The key thing for this treatment centre is to get things started; to get the first set of patients in and try whether the systems move. You can never know how good a house is until someone is living inside. So, we have to bring in the first patients and make sure that everything works fine and we can grow from there.

“I think this centre will serve Nigeria, not just Oyo State. It will serve the entire country for many years for all sorts of infectious diseases, for research, for diagnosis and for care,” Ihekweazu added.

The NCDC boss said he looks forward to coming back to Oyo State and seeing a vibrant centre with workers, patients, researchers, and more activities.