Three out of the 256 Nigerians recently evacuated from Dubai have tested positive for coronavirus in Lagos, an official has said.
Akin Abayomi, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health, gave the update on Sunday on his Twitter handle.
The 256 evacuees arrived at the Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos, on May 6 and were placed on 14 days of compulsory isolation. The returnees are being isolated at undisclosed hotels in Lagos.
Upon arrival, officials of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said all the 256 evacuees tested negative for COVID-19.
However, on Sunday, the Lagos State Commissioner for Health said three of them have tested positive for COVID-19.
“3 of the returnees recently evacuated from Dubai have tested positive for #COVID19 infection following COVID-19 test conducted on them.
“Those affected have been admitted to Lagos COVID-19 care centre for appropriate treatment protocols.
“LSMOH will continue to adhere strictly to quarantine protocols and enforce necessary precautionary measures so as to contain the spread of COVID-19 Infection,” the commissioner wrote.
Efforts to reach Mr Abayomi, on why the patients who initially tested negative later tested positive during isolation, were unsuccessful as calls and text messages were not responded.
However, according to the World Health Organisation, the incubation period of coronavirus infection is an average of 5 to 6 days and can also take up to 14 days. This is the period between exposure to the virus and patients showing symptoms. In other words, the three patients could have been infected but asymptomatic when they returned, and thus initially tested negative.
In addition to the new positive cases recorded in Lagos, three more COVID-19 related deaths have been recorded in the state.
This brings the total deaths from COVID-19 to 36 in Lagos State. Details about the deceased patients were not disclosed.
As of Sunday afternoon, therefore, Lagos has 2,389 confirmed cases of coronavirus, 608 discharged cases and 36 deaths.
The commissioner urged Lagos residents and particularly those who recently returned to the country to cooperate with the COVID-19 response team as may be desirable at all times and in all circumstances.