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UK Returnee Declared Positive For Coronavirus In Benue Cries Out, Says I’m Negative

According to her, the Benue governor announced to the public that she had Coronavirus when the result of the test conducted on her was yet to be release.


A 54-year-old woman named Susan Okpe, who recently returned to Nigeria from the United Kingdom, has accused Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State of playing politics with her life.

According to her, the Benue governor announced to the public that she had Coronavirus when the result of the test conducted on her was yet to be release.

Okpe is pleading with President Muhammadu Buhari and the United Kingdom Government to rescue her from the state government.

She said she is being abandoned at the Benue State University Teaching Hospital with no medical personnel attending to her for three days.

Governor Ortom had on Saturday announced Okpe as Benue's first recorded case of Coronavirus.

According to her family, Okpe, a British-Nigerian, arrived the country on Saturday, March 21, via Kenya Airways for the burial of her mother scheduled to hold in April.

She was being treated for malaria and typhoid and test conducted before leaving the United Kingdom came out negative for COVID-19.

A family member, who spoke to our correspondent, expressed shock that Governor Ortom went on air to announce that Okpe tested positive when they were yet to see the result of her test.

Explaining how Okpe got to the hospital, the family source said she was running temperature due to the fatigue of travelling.

"An experienced doctor was contacted, tests were conducted and she was being treated for malaria and typhoid.

"When the NCDC contacted me on the invitation of the Benue State government, I gave my consent that she should be tested but as I speak with you, none of us had seen the test result, not even the Medical Director of the Cottage Hospital who assisted the NCDC to get samples has seen the result.

“We only got to see through the television where the governor announced her name," the family source said.

Speaking to our correspondent, Okpe stated that while she tested negative to the virus in the UK, the Benue Government took her from the hospital where she was being treated for malaria and abandoned her at the Benue State University Teaching Hospital after announcing she was infected with the virus.

She added that she does not have any symptoms of the virus when she arrived in the country, adding that medical personnel at the airport tested her.

“My crime is that am a British who came into Nigeria, particularly Benue State; felt feverish, and I took myself for a check-up because I have travelled longer than usual.

“I passed from Lagos to Abuja, my temperature was like any other passenger who was being monitored by the authorities.

“I was told by the doctor that my temperature was high and I asked them to keep me for observation as I did not experience any before I left London.

“I was told by the doctors that the standard procedure was to call for a test from the state ministry of health of which two gentlemen came to do a throat and nose swoop.

“A friend then came in to tell me that a press conference is being done with my name announced by the governor that I have COVID-19 without my knowledge,” she narrated.

Okpe added that her temperature was now normal, adding that the state government had refused to allow her continue her malaria treatment as she had been abandoned for days.

She said, "After two days, my temperature has normalised from 38:2 to 36:4, the record is there to be verified.

“Now, I am sick with swollen gums, been stooling throughout the night, no nurses or medical attention.”

Okpe revealed that Benue State deputy governor, Benson Abounu, visited the hospital where she is being treated with armed men and an ambulance demanding that she followed them.

She said, "Upon hearing the news, I went mad and demanded to see the medical director. The next thing was armed men, ambulance and a siege around the hospital for me to be removed for what I don’t know.

"I said I was not moving without a reason, I was surrounded and to stop the embarrassment to my family and younger sister, I spoke with the deputy governor and he assured me I was safe, will be cared for.

"I told him that if the state is insisting that I am ill, I should be taken to Abuja to be tested.

“I have never in my life seen a stage-played drama with human life and politics like this before, I want the world, Nigerians, Benue State to hear my side and verify that I am not COVID-19 positive.

“I left my children in London, they are healthy till this moment."

Okpe pleaded with the authorities to take her to any standard centre and verify her claims.