The Osun state government corrected the record on Saturday, saying in a statement that only one COVID-19 patient was missing from the isolation center, after reports said six had escaped from their isolation center. Osun State is located in southwest Nigeria.
The Osun State government was reported to have launched a manhunt for six individuals who escaped from an isolation centre in Ejigbo on Friday night.
The reports said the six patients belonged to a cluster of COVID-19 cases who returned to their hometown, Ejigbo, from Ivory Coast last week and were quarantined by the state government.
A statement signed by an unnamed Director of Media gave the names of the six persons with their phone numbers.
But in a statement on Saturday, Funke Egbemode, Commissioner for Information and Civic Orientation in Osun state, said only one person was missing from the isolation center and an investigation was ongoing.
She said: “Our attention has been drawn to a story purporting that six persons were missing from our Isolation centre in Ejigbo.
“One of the writers quoted a non-existent statement from the government to lend some measure of credibility to the story.
“Nothing can be further from the truth. As a government, we have not issued any statement to confirm or deny such story. Besides, a quick check showed that the name and number of the first person on the list of the purported missing patients, is indeed currently in our facility in Ejigbo.
“Recall that about a week ago, we received 127 returnees from Ivory Coast and we have kept them since then to avoid community transfer of the virus.
“This morning we embarked on a headcount and found out that only one person could not be accounted for by officials stationed at the Isolation centre out of the 127 persons.
“The State Government is currently investigating the matter and will ensure that the missing person is brought back to the Isolation centre and we will also ensure we trace all his contacts.
“We want to reiterate that any official(s) found culpable will also be dealt with accordingly.
“We implore members of the public to discountenance the alarm being raised. We will continue to do everything to protect the lives of our citizens in this fight against Coronavirus”.