JOHANNESBURG – A 25-year-old Nigerian-American student at the Western Michigan University (WMU) in the US died from Covid-19 just weeks before his graduation, The Guardian Nigeria reported.
According to the newspaper, Bassey Offiong died over the weekend.
Chemical engineering student Offiong was allegedly refused coronavirus tests in the Kalamazoo area, where he lived off-campus, despite experiencing symptoms that included fever, fatigue and breathing difficulties.
Offiong was eventually hospitalised at Beaumont, in Royal Oak, where he spent his last week on a ventilator in the facility’s intensive care unit.
His cousin, Rosalyn Afiong paid tribute to him on Facebook after his death: “My dear sweet cousin, this is unreal. I don’t even know where to begin. May your soul rest in eternal peace. You did everything and more with your time here on Earth, and although you weren’t anywhere near done in your purpose, you’ve been called for a higher purpose bigger than us all. I love you so much and I pray you keep that same light shining on us from above.”
WMU president, Edward Montgomery, said: “On behalf of the entire Bronco community, I want to extend my deepest condolences to his entire family, including his sister Asari, who has been generous in communicating with us regularly.”
Meanwhile, the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Monday confirmed via its Twitter account that two people had died from Covid-19, while giving a breakdown of positive cases in the country.
“Twenty new cases of Covid-19 have been reported in Nigeria; 13 in Lagos, four in FCT, four in Kaduna and one in Oyo State. As at 09:00 on 30 March there are 131 confirmed cases of Covid-19 reported in Nigeria with two deaths.”
Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has signed a law declaring Covid-19 a dangerous infectious disease. Various measures have been put in place by the government to curb the spread of the virus, such as restriction of movement in Lagos, FCT and Ogun State, and other areas.