Coronavirus patients in Nigeria protest against ‘poor care’

A group of coronavirus patients in Nigeria protested outside a treatment centre in the north-eastern state of Gombe against ill-treatment by the authorities at the facility.

An inscription on a Nigerian flag

The patients who complained of the lack of drugs and feeding mingled with members of the community during their demonstration which happened on Tuesday night.

The demonstrators blocked a nearby highway in the village of Kwadon - about 8km (five miles) from the state capital.

An eyewitness told the local daily Guardian that the “government should do the needful before it gets out of hand because the patients we saw today are really angry and we don’t know what could happen next.”

The state health commissioner, Ahmed Gana, in an interview with BBC said the patients were asymptomatic and did not need drugs. He also denied that they do not feed them well.

Meanwhile, the commissioner of information and culture, Alhassan Ibrahim Kwami, said the patients were protesting because they “misunderstood” their coronavirus status.

Officials later convinced the demonstrators to go back into the treatment centre.

However, there is a worry of a possible spread of the virus to villagers who came out to witness the protest.

The authorities have urged those who might have come into contact with the protesting patients to self-isolate for at least 14 days.

Nigeria has so far confirmed 2,950 cases with 98 deaths. Out of this Gombe state has so far confirmed about 100 coronavirus cases.

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