Nobody Treated us: Discharged COVID-19 patients open up

As COVID-19 pandemic continues making the headlines in the country, a fresh allegation has surfaced in Niger State.

COVID-19 patients in Minna isolation centre have alleged that they were not treated after they were confirmed positive for the deadly coronavirus. Instead, they alleged they were dehumanised and neglected.

According to one of the patients, the isolation centre was so crowdy that the beds were not enough for them, and they were forced to sleep on the floor.

They spoke contrary to claim by the State Taskforce on COVID19 that the isolation centre is adequate to accommodate a large number of patients and well-equipped.

Contrary to the claims of the state on May 12 that 95 patients were in the centre, living comfortably, some of the patients made a video which went viral, accusing the government of maltreating them in the Isolation Centre. They claimed that they lacked electricity, food and attention.

But Commissioner of Health, Dr Muhammad Maikusidi said the video was fake and meant to tarnish the good works of the government.

However, contrary to the claims of the Commissioner, the discharged patients claimed that no other test was carried out on them before they were discharged. They just told them to leave, that they had tested negative.

A discharged patient that was picked up from Zumba in Shiroro local government said he didn’t expect what he went through at the Isolation Centre.

He claimed that he was expecting to be given drugs or any other sort of treatment, but none of such was done to him till he was discharged.

“I expected that I will undergo some treatment, but apart from food, nothing was given to me in the form of treatment. They did not give me a single drug.

“They only give us food every day that is all. No single drug, not even paracetamol was given to me throughout the 14 days,” he said.

He further stated that his mother and other relations, who were quarantined with him, base on the claims that they might have been exposed to the virus were treated shabbily. Once they were discharged, he claimed that they were all told to find their way home, with no means of transportation provided for them.

“They just came and asked us to go. They did not tell us how we would move neither did they consider that we may not have any money to transport us home.

“We trekked from the isolation centre at the back of the police secondary school to the main road.

“From there, we trekked to Dutsen Kuran Gwari before someone assisted us to Sabon Gari junction.

“It was at Sabon Gari that a commercial vehicle carried us to Zumba before we borrowed money from our people to pay the driver,” he lamented.

As it stands, Niger states has 26 confirmed cases. Five of the patients have been discharged while one death has been recorded with 18 active cases at the moment.

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