The national leader of the All Progressives Congress (APC), Senator Bola Tinubu, has revealed that his Chief Security Officer, late Lateef Raheem, died of COVID -19.
The death of Raheem occurred last Friday after a brief illness.
In a statement issued yesterday by his Media Office, Tinubu, however, revealed that he and his wife have tested negative for the virus.
According to him, “Following the death of our well-respected and beloved Chief Security Officer, Alhaji Lateef Raheem, Nigeria Centre for Diseases Control (NCDC) medics took the wise precaution of taking samples from his body for testing to actually determine the cause of his death. Today, the test results are back. The samples tested positive for COVID-19.”
The former governor of Lagos State noted that COVID-19 is a real and present threat, adding that those who discount it or call it a fabrication do a grave and dangerous disservice to the public well-being.
He noted that those who stigmatise people who might have been stricken by the virus are also doing a disservice by casting blame on the innocent and discouraging people from taking the virus test, stressing that the health menace cannot be defeated by ignorance or shaming one another.
Tinubu media office stated that: “As a precautionary measure taken soon after the death of Raheem, Tinubu, his wife, Senator Oluremi, and all their aides took the COVID-19 test on April 25. The results of the tests were returned this morning (yesterday). The test results for both Tinubu and his wife were negative.
“The result of one of the aides was positive. The rest of other staff members were negative. The staff member who contracted it has been isolated in accordance with NCDC guidelines. Further contact tracing and COVID-19 tests are being conducted by the NCDC with regard to the relatives and possible contacts of that staff member who contracted it.”
The APC chieftain added that the country cannot overcome this challenge by acting like it does not exist or by trying to conceal that someone may have it, saying the culture of denial is counterproductive and would do a great harm in the current situation.
Tinubu stressed that openness and transparency must be observed “if we are to defeat this disease. There is no house immune to its entry. Contracting the virus should not bring social or moral stigma on anyone more than contracting malaria or a common cold.”