The Niger Delta Development Commission (NDDC) says its Executive Director of Finance and Administration, Chief Ibanga Etang, died of complications from Coronavirus (COVID-19).
Mr Charles Odili, the NDDC Director of Corporate Affairs, said this in a statement in Port Harcourt on Tuesday amid controversies that trailed Etang’s death on May 28.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that after the death of Etang, the commission shut its head office in Port Harcourt and directed its staff to go on self-isolation immediately.
This had fueled speculations that the director died from complications of COVID-19, but the commission later dismissed the reports on the cause of Etang’s death.
Odili, however, said the family of the deceased has now authorised NDDC management to announce that the late executive director tested positive for Coronavirus.
“Our late executive director, Ibanga Etang who passed away in the early hours of May 28, tested positive to COVID-19 as confirmed by his family.
“The Rivers state Ministry of Health has written to NDDC, confirming the cause of death to be COVID-19.
“The ministry has directed the commission to order all management staff to go into self-isolation for a period of 14 days with effect from June 2,” he said.
Odili said the health ministry also sought the cooperation of organisations doing business with NDDC to trace their staff and contractors who had close contact with the deceased.
The NDDC spokesman said the family of Etang and NDDC management were pleading to members of the public against politicising the death of the executive director.
“We wish to be left alone to mourn him with dignity while we pray for the peaceful repose of the soul of Etang,” he appealed.