— Says Nathaniel Blama, Liberia’s COVID-19 index case
Nathaniel Blama, Liberia’s index case of COVID-19, has told Daily Observer that even though he was the first to be tested positive of the virus, he is not the one who brought the virus into the country.
Mr. Blama in an interview at his Old Road residence said the fact that those who have died from the virus are not in any way connected to him is clear evidence that the virus was already in the country before he was tested positive.
“I agree I requested to be tested so I was the first who was tested positive, but I didn’t bring Corona to Liberia because all of the other cases are not attached to me, he said”.
Blama said the three persons that came in contact with him and tested positive have all recovered and have no link with those who have died and were tested positive for COVID-19.
“The positive thing that I keep saying is early treatment, early recovery,” Blama said.
He said after his recovery from the COVID-19 virus; he does not want to pay attention to the negative aspect, but the fact that he came out alive is something that is pushing him to make public awareness about the virus.
The suspended executive director of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) said even though he did something wrong which he did not indicate during the interview, what is more important is the surviving story that allows others to survive.
“While it is true I did something wrong that I must admit, it is not important now because if I had died, to who will you be asking those tough questions? There are others that have died; will you be asking them? The surviving story that allows others to survive is what we should be telling, not the ensuing things,” Blama told Daily Observer.
According to Blama, when it was announced that he tested positive for the COVID-19, things happened so fast that he does not want to focus on because they did not help the situation.
Sharing his experience, Blama said COVID-19 is like having malaria or other sicknesses which one will not realize until they get tested at the hospital before understanding the fact that they are infected with a particular virus or disease.
Making a comment on his suspension, Mr. Blama said: “I do not feel any indifference because the thing here is that I was appointed by the President and work according to his will and pleasure. In the midst of that kind of confusion where the first case of Corona has been announced in the country, and happened to be a senior government official, I think the President acted wisely by taking me off the payroll to stabilize the situation.”
“In my thinking, my suspension was in the best interest of the country that helps the government so that I can focus on my treatment and the next step forward,” he said.
Blama said he accepted his suspension in good faith, adding that, when called upon by President George M. Weah to serve his country, he will willingly accept the gesture.
Blama’s experience at the treatment center
Blama further explaining his experience at the treatment center said during the course of time, he had negative thoughts; recounting a movement when he had to think “what if I die?” but the positive state of mind and being positive helps his recovery process.
He lauded doctors and nurses for “the high level of professionalism” carried out by them to create a friendly environment during his treatment that he said helped him greatly while undergoing treatment.
When questioned about the kind of treatment taken that helped him to recover, he said, “Well, I know what kind of treatment the doctors give me but for the purpose of the interview I cannot tell you because it is unprofessional to do so, and because of the society we live in.”
“I do not want to say something today and if someone comes down with the virus they result to taking the same drugs without going the hospital all because I said it, what that could do is endanger their health and cause them to spread the virus to others,” Blama said.
Blama, however, advised people who are sick to get tested first, and if positive they should have the courage to go to the treatment center which he strongly believes will lead to faster recovery because there is a greater chance for survival when there is early treatment.
He encouraged more people to commit to treatment so that in a short time Liberia can be among the first list of counties that will be declared Corona free.