Many people couldn’t figure out what is actually killing people in Kano.
Two questions are commonly asked by people: (i) Are reports of mass deaths real?
(ii) Are they linked to COVID-19?
Based on numerous accounts of people on the ground in Kano, the deaths are real.
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Earlier, Abdullahi Ganduje, the Governor of Kano, who initially denied the deaths, eventually admitted them.
Only that the governor based them on hypertension, diabetes, meningitis and acute malaria.
To be clear, it will be difficult for anyone, even the NCDC, to say for certain if these deaths were caused by the Coronavirus since samples of the deceased were not taken & since many of them died at home rather than the hospital and were quickly buried in accordance with Islamic tenets.
NCDC will now have to rely on verbal autopsy, which, though imperfect, will give important clues.
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Many don’t believe the untested death was caused by the virus. But the case — that of the accomplished accountant who died at Unilorin Teaching Hospital — was different because several opportunities to collect the man’s samples before and after his death were passed up, showing clearly that some forces were determined to evade a COVID-19 confirmation.
In the case of Kano, nothing CONFIRMS that these deaths are COVID-19-related, but there is four lines of thought that point fingers to COVID19. And here are they:
1. While it is true that meningitis is normally experienced in the hot season in Kano & some other parts of the North around this time, its victims normally experience high fever before dying with twisted necks — that is, necks twisted to one side, right or left, and stiff.
This phenomenon was absent in the recent deaths in Kano. So Meningitis is out!
2. Although coughing and sneezing were not noticed in many of the deceased, they had fever.
Based on all the cases tracked — from Ilorin to Oyo and Lagos, COVID-19 symptoms tend to vary until the final hours before it kills its victims.
3.Most of those who died recently in Kano are elderly, grandfathers. Their age range is between 55 and 80.
It’s not like the young are invincible, but this virus is known to kill the elderly more often — because at that age they usually have underlying health conditions.
4. Many of these deaths have occurred within the Kano metropolis.
It’s the city — not the villages where doctors are out of reach and hospitals are impossible to access. Whatever kills ‘city people’ so rapidly has to be really dangerous and highly infectious. Strange.
5. Finally, it’s not just that these are mass deaths, they happened SUDDENLY.
Sources quoted some relatives as saying that before deaths, the deceased had high temperatures and were gone before any genuine efforts to manage them.
Generally, the symptoms did not even last for more than two days. The deaths mostly occurred within 24 hours of development of high temperatures.