MONROVIA – The Minister of Information Lenn Eugene Nagbe has disclosed to FrontPageAfrica that James Reynold, Assistant Minister for Planning and Programming at the Ministry of Public Works, is the latest to be tested positive for the coronavirus.
Liberia now has seven confirmed cases.
FrontPageAfrica further gathered that the Minister of Public Works, Mobotu Vlah Nyepan, may have come into contact with Reynolds, but FrontPageAfrica has not been able to verify whether the Minister has been quarantined.
While it also remains unclear how he contracted the coronavirus, FrontPageAfrica gathered that he attended the City of Light Church of God in Bardnesville when he was already showing symptoms of COVID-19.
FrontPageAfrica has learned that the church has been quarantined and the National Public Health Institute has been tracing people who came in contact with him .
Meanwhile, the National Public Health Institute has come under criticisms for refusing to disclose the identities of those recently tested positive for the virus.
However, authorities of NPHIL say stigmatization of victims in communities is the reason they have stopped naming victims.
However, some citizens believe that Liberia being a very small country, hiding the identities of the those infected could lead to more infections and could adversely impact contact tracing.
Speaking on the issue, Mr. Tolbert Nyenswah, former Director General of NPHIL, said, “effective risks communication, social mobilization, community engagement including working with the media and timely information sharing are critical to outbreaks response. That’s the best way of getting ahead of the curve. It enhances contacts tracing and community sensitization.”
In a related development, NPHIL has disclosed that the first three cases are expected to be discharged if their second test results from the National Reference Laboratory come out negative as the first.