- Warns residents to brace up for tougher measures
- 16 students rescued at Seme border
- Davido’s fiancee, Chioma, tests positive
- FG converts NYSC camps, stadia to isolation centres
The Lagos State Government is projecting that the coronavirus pandemic may explode to 39,000 cases across Nigeria in the worst case scenario.
There are currently 81 confirmed cases in the country, 52 of which are in Lagos State alone.
The figure rose by 16 from the 65 recorded on Thursday, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said late Friday.
Hundreds of Nigerians who were caught unawares by the ban on international flights into the country on account of the pandemic are now trapped at the nation’s borders, desperately seeking to get back home.
Sixteen of them, all of whom are students, were yesterday rescued at the Seme borders by the Lagos State Government, which also warned residents to brace up for tougher measures in the bid to curtail the spread of the infection.
Singer Davido revealed that his fiancee, Chioma Rowland, had tested positive for coronavirus, 13 days after arriving from London.
Davido said in a statement that Chioma tested positive following a test conducted on himself, his baby, fiancee and 28 others, whom he had been exposed to.
The Ministry of Youth and Sports Development said it had received the nod of President Muhammadu Buhari to convert four federal government owned stadia and the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) orientation camps across the country to temporary isolation centres for Coronavirus cases.
Lagos projects 39000 cases
Giving an update on the pandemic on Friday, Lagos State Health Commissioner Akin Abayomi said that “our mathematical modeling shows that the worst-case scenario is that we may see up to 39,000 cases in Lagos.”
But he said the figure might not go beyond 13000 “if everyone practices good social distancing.”
He added: “If we add social distancing to active contact tracing, then we will be able to bend the curve further.
“The figures may seem alarming at this point, but this is just to emphasise to the Lagos community to follow instructions of the incident commander to make sure that we practice social distancing.
“Looking at the same time frame from the introduction of the index case, you can see that Lagos State is not seen anywhere near what Spain, Italy, and Iran are showing.
“At two or three weeks of our index case, we are flat and at week four, we have 37 cases; while at the same fourth week, Italy, Iran, and Spain had more than 20,000 cases. So, we are doing something right in the state.”
The commissioner said six of the cases in the state were still in the ship that brought them to Nigeria.
“We will be finding ways to evacuate them,” he said.
Shedding light on the various cases, he said: “70 per cent of the patients are male and 30 per cent are female, one infant, and a young person under 30 years.
“We have above age 60 years too. Again, 82 per cent of the cases are imported and 14 percent are direct contact, while we have no idea where 2 per cent contracted it from.”
Nigeria’s confirmed cases rise to 81
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said on Twitter that confirmed cases in the country had risen to 81 by 11.55pm yesterday
This is 16 up from the 65 posted on Thursday.
The new cases are eight in Lagos, three in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), two each in Oyo and Enugu States and one in Edo State.
The breakdown is as follows:
Lagos- 52; FCT- 14; Ogun- 3; Ekiti- 1; Oyo- 3; Edo- 2; Bauchi- 2; Enugu -2; Osun-1 and Rivers-1
Three of the cases have been allowed to go home while one death has been recorded.
Lagos rescued 16 students trapped at Seme border, says Sanwo-Olu
At a separate press conference on Friday, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State hinted that many Nigerians who were caught unawares by the ban on international flights into the country are now trapped at the nation’s borders, desperately seeking to get back home.
The ban was announced last Saturday by the federal government as part of the strategy to check further importation of the coronavirus into the country.
The land borders have been shut for the seventh month running to check smuggling, effectively blocking entry into the country by land and air.
The governor said the state government had to intervene in the case of 16 students who were so trapped at the Seme border.
The students were rescued and sent to an isolation centre for tests.
He said they would be released once they tested negative for COVID-19.
Asked why the state was not yet on total lock down, the governor said the state had not yet reached that stage but he said it could not be far from it.
Sanwo-Olu said he would not rule out a possible lockdown of the state in the coming days and urged residents to brace for tougher measures.
The governor said that there had been a “strange trend” recorded by the state in its response to the viral epidemic, hinting that some of the new infections showed Lagos might be entering a phase of community transmission of the disease.
“I have said again and again that this fight is a collective one; we are all in it together,” he said.
His words: “We are moving in the direction of total lockdown but there are indices we need to see before we carry it out, which we are yet to see.
“We need to see a huge spike in the number of confirmed cases. So we are looking at that.
“There are indices that need to happen; there are numbers that we need to see for us to know that we need to shut down everywhere, but we have not seen that number.
“As we are having cases coming in, we are also excited because we are seeing a very positive response and patients also at the edge of being discharged and that for us shows that there are some balances coming in.”
Sanwo-Olu said that of the 44 confirmed cases in the state, Ikeja and Eti-Osa local government areas have the highest number of cases.
Davido’s fiancée Chioma tests positive
Davido in his statement said his four-month old baby, Ifeanyi David Adeleke jr, was negative.
“Hey everyone! I came back recently from America after canceling the tour. My fiancé Chioma also came back from London recently with our baby,” he said.
He added: “We had no symptoms and still both feel perfectly fine but because of our recent travel history, we decided to take ourselves and our all close associates we’ve come in recent contact with for the COVID-19 test on the 25th of March.
“Unfortunately, my fiancee’s results came back positive while all 31 others tested have come back negative including our baby.
“We are however doing perfectly fine and she is even still yet to show any symptoms whatsoever.
“She is now being quarantined and I have also gone into full self-isolation for the minimum 14 days.
“I want to use this opportunity to thank you all for your endless love and prayers in advance and to urge everyone to please stay at home as we control the spread of this virus! Together we can beat this!”
Davido returned with his wife, son, father, sister, brothers, cousins, and management team from the United States of America on March 14.
The singer returned to Nigeria after his North American tour was cut short due to the spread of coronavirus in Canada and the United States of America.
Chioma joins a long list of Nigerians that have tested positive to coronavirus after the first index case was identified on February 27.
FG to convert NYSC orientation camps, four stadia to isolation centres
Youth and Sports Development Minister Sunday Dare said President Muhammadu Buhari has given the ministry the go ahead to convert the National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) orientation camps across the country and four federal government owned stadia into isolation centres in the battle against the coronavirus.
Dare writing on his Twitter handle yesterday said: “Mr. President has approved for the Ministry of Youth and Sports to open and make available the stadiums in Surulere Lagos, Ibadan, Abuja, and Kaduna, as well as our NYSC camps nationwide for use as isolation centers as they are needed. We are in touch with relevant authorities.”
Four additional test labs coming next week, says NCDC
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said that additional four test laboratories will be added to the existing five test labs in the country to scale up testing capacities.
The new labs to be located in Ibadan, Abakaliki, Port Harcourt and Kaduna, will be ready in the next week.
The existing five facilities are: Nigerian Institute of Medical research in Lagos, Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Gaduwa NCDC in Abuja, and two research centres in Ede,Osun State and Irrua in Edo state.
The Director-General of the NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, said on Arise TV, yesterday that “In the next week, we are going to add four new labs to our network. We have worked in Ibadan over the past couple of days and we should activate it today. I have a team that has been in Ibadan for the past two days, then, we will go to Abakaliki where we have an existing lab, then we will go to Port Harcourt and Kaduna. So, these four should be ready in the next week and add to the existing capacity.
“There are also new diagnostics. There are people working on rapid diagnostics tests kits, and we are hoping that IT can be brought to the market and we will make our purchases and procurement as soon as possible.
“Nigerians are not going to pay for any of these tests; as long as you need it, we will support the test through a public sector fund. Of course, if you want to have the test privately, we don’t have any private provision as at now, but there are groups working on it.
“If you want it done in the convenience of your house or wherever you want, there should be a private sector that can offer that to you. But that does not exist at the moment for any validated care. We are working with a group of private sector colleagues to make this happen in Lagos in the short-term and then in Abuja and spread it to the other cities.”
Military readies 17 hospitals as COVID-19 isolation centres
The Defence headquarters said on Friday that the military had 17 hospitals ready to handle confirmed cases of the coronavirus pandemic.
Besides,the DHQ is in the process of recalling its retired medical personnel to complement those in the active service,the Coordinator of the Defence Media Operations, Maj Gen John Enenche, said in Abuja.
The Armed Forces,according to him,are adopting medical and security approaches in its contribution to the battle against the coronavirus.
He said: “The medical approach is the deployment of military personnel in aid of all ministries, departments and agencies of the Federal Government through the provision of land, maritime and air assets, for transportation of emergency cases and medical supplies, as was the case with the medical supplies donated by the Jack Ma Foundation.
“Furthermore, under the medical aid, we have 17 medical facilities spread across the country, which have been designated for isolation and treatment of confirmed cases of the COVID-19. We have also concluded plans to recall our retired medical personnel to complement those in active service.”