Public Relations Officer of the Akwa Ibom State chapter of Nigeria Medical Association (NMA),, Dr. Emmanuel John, said the following on Inspiration FM (Saturday, April 25, 2020):
Dr. Aniekeme Uwah, the State Epidemiologist was removed from office because he had instructions from the Commissioner for Health to collect only ten samples.
He (Dr. Aniekeme Uwah) asked why and the Commissioner replied that: “Cross River State has no case because they are not testing, this is how we went about testing HIV and became number one in the country”.
“”The Akwa Ibom State Commissioner for Health came up with a policy that anybody that wants to get tested for Covid-19 must be cleared by the State Government which Dr Aniekeme Uwah objected to.”
“There is no such thing as aggressive testing in Akwa Ibom State. I don’t even understand what that means…. So far, no more than 90 persons have been tested. I don’t have the exact number, the State epidemiologist has the correct number.”
“As at when the Commissioner for health called Dr Aniekeme Uwah not to test more than 10 persons, Dr Uwah had already tested 19 persons. The 20th person waiting to be tested when the call came was a senior doctor, a nephrologist who has being exposed to Covid 19 and is self isolating at the moment. What Dr Uwah did by testing 31 persons who met the case definition saved this state grand embarrassment if the people waiting to be tested were turned back for no clinical reason and also saved the society from community infection, should they turn positive.’
“Akwa Ibom is the only State in Nigeria where a Commissioner of Health, against WHO and NCDC directives, in the COVID 19 Incidence Officer. The Commissioner imposed himself”.