Kogi mortuary rejects corpse over COVID-19 fears
Controversy has trailed the corpse of an 83-year-old woman, identified as Mrs. Bamigbola Olayemi whose body was taken to a General Hospital in Egbe, under Yagba West Local Government area of Kogi State as her corps was rejected by the management of the hospital over suspicion of COVID-19.
It was reliably gathered that, before her demise, the deceased was admitted at the Accident and Emergency Unit, University of Abuja Teaching Hospital, Gwagwalada, with a complaint of progressive generalized body weakness and fever.
The fears entertained according to sources was borne out of reports that Abuja has the second-highest number of coronavirus cases in the country.
Reports gathered that Kogi State presently has reported zero cases of the deadly virus.
It was further learned that the hospital management acted on the orders of the Senior Special Assistant to Kogi State Governor on Security in charge of Yagba West Government, Tade Oshaloto.
The Medical Officer in charge of the hospital, Dr. Ola Iwarere told the deceased’s family members that, the decision to deny the corpse bearers access to the use of the hospital mortuary facilities was to ascertain the cause of death and allow for proper isolation of visitors who accompanied the corpse from Abuja.
Dr. Iwarere, however, recommended that the family of the deceased immediately proceed for burial while visiting sympathizers be asked to return to Abuja as there were no facilities in the area to isolate the visitors.
Speaking with newsmen on Thursday, the Senior Special Assistant to Kogi State Governor on Security in charge of Yagba West Government, Tade Oshaloto attributed his decision not to allow entry of the corpse into the local government area to current efforts to prevent the spread of coronavirus to the area.
He noted that information at his disposal was that the corpse left a hospital in Abuja for Egbe, Kogi State without any evidence of clearance.
The council Chief wondered how the ambulance secured passage from Abuja to Egbe despite the subsisting lockdown order in the state.
He recalled that the local council under his watch had banned all social gatherings, including burials, until further notice while also having a task force in place to enforce compliance to the sit-at-home order of the state government.
Confirming this development, the Kogi State Commissioner for Health, Dr. Saka Haruna Audu told newsmen that Mrs. Bamigbola Olayemi died of natural causes referring to the referral letter that accompanied her corpse.
“I must commend the SSA security, Oshaloto and the people of the area for their vigilance. There is no cause for alarm. There was sufficient evidence the deceased did not die as a result of breathing difficulties but normal death” he added.