Confusion, chaos, pandemonium and catastrophe with attendant calamity rented the atmosphere of Owerri Imo State capital on Wednesday October 11, this year as academic work in most schools virtually came to an abrupt end as bewildered parents, guardians and some teachers through panic measures invaded the various school premises to whisk away their children and wards to safety following an unconfirmed report that went viral via social media that some unknown health personnel assisted by unidentified soldiers were going from school to school so as to inoculate pupils against the newly found endemic disease of monkey pox.
In a press statement issued in Owerri through the Secretary to the State Government (SGI) sir George Eche, he debunked the rumours of soldiers going round schools to inject children with dangerous chemical in the name of vaccination against the monkey pox virus in the state.
Briefing newsmen on the issue, the SGI described the social media originated report as unfounded, false and baseless adding that there is neither presence of Army officers in any schools in the state nor any on-going vaccination or immunization days exercise to warrant such spurious rumour.
He disclosed that the state government has been on alert since the outbreak of the virus and has done everything needful to nip the situation in the bud adding that anything that can jeopardize the health status of Imolites is taken care of.
The State Adviser on Health, Dr. Angela Uwakwan and adviser to the governor on women mobilization and women affairs Dr. Joy Ezebilor as well as the Permanent Secretary Ministry of Health, Mr. Austin Iheaka had also described the rumour as the handwork of some mischief makers who want to instill fear in the minds of the people and create panic or palpable tension in the state.
However the representative of the World Health Organization in the state assumed that the rumour must have emanated from a recent health delivery service in Enugu carried out by men of the 82 division which has nothing to do with the outbreak of Monkey Pox outbreak.