From Steve Oko, Umuahia
A major boost has been recorded in the battle to contain the spread of the dreaded coronavirus pandemic as scientists in the Abia State University Uturu, ABSU, have developed a geographical tracking device and early warning system for coronavirus.
They have also developed a live risk map for covid -19 pandemic.
The breakthrough, according to Gov. Okezie Ikpeazu was courtesy of researchers at the Centre for Epidemiology and Climate Research of the university led by the Head of Department, Geography and Planning, Dr. Felix Ike.
Ikpeazu in a press statement by his Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Onyebuchi Ememanka, expressed great delight over the discovery which he described as a major milestone in the fight against the global pandemic.
The statement made available to The AUTHORITY in Umuahia read in part : “Still basking in the euphoria of the production of ABSU Hand Sanitizers and Nose Masks that meet World Health Organization and International Standards, the Centre for Epidemiology and Climate Research, Abia State University led by the Head of Department, Geography and Planning, Dr. Felix Ike, has developed a Geographical Tracking Device and Live COVID-19 Risk Map for Abia State and Nigeria.
“These are products of capacity building and quality leadership of the Governor and Visitor to the University, Okezie Victor Ikpeazu, Ph.D, whom the University had earlier branded a Scholar-in-Governance and who had challenged the University to make Industry of her Research Activities
“They Include: Geographical tracking and mapping of COVID-19 in Nigeria; Production of Live Risk Map for COVID-19 in Nigeria; production of Live COVID-19 Risk Map for Abia State; and Development of COVID-19 Early Warning System (EWS) for Aba and Umuahia, Abia State.”
The statement said “These will assist in monitoring the movement of the Disease in Abia State and Nigeria, as well as, assist planners in checking any impending threat by the Disease in the State and Nigeria.”
It further read :”The Centre has also developed COVID-19 Hotspots Map at all Borders/Entry points in Abia State, using the Delta-T Automatic Weather Station situated in Abia State University, which was imported from Cambridge, United Kingdom, one of its kind in West Africa, as well as, the Geographic Information System / Remote Sensing Laboratory.
“Additionally, this scientific breakthrough will assist in tracking real-time survillence of emerging Public Health threats by COVID-19 in Abia State and Nigeria
“It also offers near-real-time Geo located updates from these sources to better understand the progression of the Pandemic.
“This is yet another monumental achievement of the inspirational and excellence-driven Administration of the Vice-Chancellor, Distinguished Professor E. Uche Ikonne”, the statement said.
Recall that the university has produced large quantities of hand sanitizers which it had donated to the state government for distribution to residents.