The Acting Vice-Chancellor, University of Ibadan (UI),Professor Adebola Ekanola, has revealed that no fewer than 10 persons have died from COVID-19 complications within the university, noting that people are taking the pandemic for granted.
Ekanola, who stated this during a virtual meeting of deans and heads of the departments of the institution organised by the University of Ibadan COVID-19 emergency response team, said that there had been a lot of laxity on personal protective measures because many assumed that they are safe from being infected.
The Acting Vice-Chancellor stated that although the university has been lucky not to have been badly affected by COVID-19, he maintained that students and staff of the institution needed to take charge and be responsive to ensuring no COVID-19 case is recorded in the university.
“The risk of the pandemic is higher than when the academic session started and so, individuals’ health should be prioritised above other pursuits of life,” he said.
Ekanola stressed that a task force to emphasise and encourage high compliance of students and staff of the university to wear face masks, ensure hand washing and social distancing will begin to work in the institution.
Speaking, the Head, Department of Virology, Professor Georgina Odaibo, disclosed that tests done at the University’s Department of Virology indicated that positivity rate had gone up from about 1.5 per cent in April, 2.8 per cent in May, 12 per cent by June ending to 16 per cent in July.
She said if protective measures were not in place, infection could spread to the university.
Contributing, Director, University of Ibadan Health Services, Dr Aderonke Ajayi, said that ensuring healthy environment is a collective responsibility, adding that compliance with COVID-19 protective protocol is only currently being adhered to in the religious centres within university.
Coordinator, UI COVID-19 emergency response committee, Professor Victoria Adetunji, in her own contribution, said the enlightenment programme became imperative due to the detection of delta variant of the virus in Nigeria, increase in daily cases since July and increasing positivity rate of infection.