About two weeks before Ondo State Governor Rotimi Akeredolu tested positive for COVID-19, he attended a political event without wearing a mask or observing social distancing, and sneezed at least once, a video has shown.
The footage, first published by Sahara Reporters, showed Mr Akeredolu surrounded by a crowd of supporters as they sang together.
The governor announced on Tuesday that he had tested positive for COVID-19, after treating malaria for days.
While it is unclear when the governor contracted the virus, the video was published by the news website on Monday.
Mr Akeredolu was seen in the video encircled by about a dozen of uniformly dressed party members, all unmasked, chanting his praises during which he sneezed in his palm.
Mr Akeredolu, who is seeking reelection in the Ondo governorship election coming up in October, was at the All Progressives Congress secretariat in Abuja to submit his nomination form at the time the video was shot.
Earlier that day, June 16, Mr Akeredolu was also at the State House to inform President Muhammadu Buhari about his intention to seek a second term in office.
President @MBuhari received the Ondo State Governor, @RotimiAkeredolu as he presents his expression of interest form for a 2nd term of office as Governor, at the State House, Abuja.#AsoVillaToday pic.twitter.com/0hrHSpd3d4
— Government of Nigeria (@NigeriaGov) June 16, 2020
The governor, on June 25, also meet the Ondo State Council of Obas where he was reportedly endorsed for a second term in office.
Today, I led Ondo State Council of Obas to endorse @RotimiAkeredolu for second term in Office.
We also agreed to set up committee in the three senatorial districts of Ondo State to work on his emergence. pic.twitter.com/kHxf55CU2s
— Oba F.E.O Akinruntan CON. (Olugbo of Ugbo Kingdom) (@ObatAkinruntan) June 25, 2020
With his testing result now made public, Nigerians on Twitter have expressed concerns over Mr Akeredolu’s failure to observe health safety protocols as advised by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.
Although the governor on Tuesday said he was asymptomatic to the disease, many have worried about the likelihood of him spreading the deadly virus.
Mr Akeredolu has directed all members of the state’s executive council to undergo compulsory COVID 19 test to determine their status.
Meanwhile, the Ondo state chapter of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has urged the National Centre for Disease Control to take “immediate action in testing and isolating anyone who may have been exposed to the Governor within the last few days.”
“It is quite unfortunate that the actions of Mr Governor during his trip to Abuja to submit his nomination form may have also exposed members of the House of Assembly who joined him on that trip,” the party’s spokesperson, Zadok Akintoye, reportedly said in a statement.