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Clark: my battle with COVID-19

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ClarkElder statesman Chief Edwin Clark, 93-year-old, on Wednesday, narrated his terrible experience in isolation and how he recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The nonagenarian described his 14 days in isolation and treatment period as a “terrible experience”, adding that he was at a point scared of the virus.

With his experience, he declared that COVID-19 is real and called on the Federal Government to sanction Kogi State Governor Yahaya Bello over his claims that the pandemic was not real.

Chief Clark, who spoke yesterday in Kiagbodo, Delta State, urged Nigerians to support efforts by the Federal Government to stop the spread of the pandemic in the country.

He said at his age, he recovered from the COVID-19 two weeks after testing positive.

According to him, he contracted COVID-19 after his niece, who visited his Abuja home became sick and later tested positive to the virus.

The elder statesman also confirmed that nine of his workers and siblings, who tested positive, have recovered.

Recounting his ordeal, the octogenarian said he was treated for 14 days before subsequent tests by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) returned negative.

He said given his old age and underlying health challenges, he was worried, especially after having adhered to NCDC protocols since the outbreak of the virus in the country.

Chief Clark said: “Sometime last month, I got a call from one of my nieces that she was just coming from Warri. I told her that you people in Warri don’t observe COVID-19 protocols very well and I said she should stay in the guest house.

“On the third day, she (the niece) became very ill. She was very weak, coughing and said she had malaria. I directed that she should be taken to my clinic. Because she was coughing, the doctor said she should go for a COVID-19 test.

“The following day (Friday), the Health Minister, Dr. Osagie Ehanire, sent doctors and 24 of us in the house were tested and on Saturday, the result came and nine of us tested positive. Number one on the list was I. I was terribly worried.

“He (Dr. Ehanire) contacted the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) team and they said they want to evacuate me to a good isolation centre, but I insisted on treatment from home. They said that was okay. They sent doctors to look after me and the rest who tested positive. I was worried because I have heard of people dying of the virus.”

Clark said aside from malaria, he did not develop other symptoms of the virus until he was confirmed positive.
The Ijaw leader lauded the Minister of Health and the ministry’s officials for a prompt response that led to his quick recovery from the virus.

On Bello, the elder statesmen said he should be ashamed of himself.

He said: “He should be sanctioned. This is a man parading himself that he wants to be President of Nigeria. It’s all nonsense. Some of them feel because they are very close to Mr. President, they can do anything.”

He said the timing of the National Identification Number (NIN) was wrong and urged President Muhammadu Buhari to suspend the process due to rising COVID-19 cases.

The elder statesman said: “The ongoing NIN is a very irresponsible action from the Federal Government. You cannot be asking Nigerians to go and queue without social distancing and wearing of face mask, and struggling to register. What for? Under this period, how many people are they going to register?

“The duty of every government is security and welfare, but as at today, you have people fighting everywhere to register for NIN card. What is so urgent about it? Who’s losing money if you don’t register now?

“I appeal to the Federal Government to stop this irresponsible exercise and concentrate on COVID-19. They (political leaders) must show an example to others. If at 93, I’m wearing a face mask in my house, nobody should be exempted, including Mr. President. They should show an example to Nigerians. The regulations should be carried out.”

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