This past week has witnessed a rise in the number of cases of the covid-19 in Nigeria. Compared to the 246 cases that were reported last week, the cases increased by 77% to 436 this week. This rise in infection rate calls for more compliance with the covid-19 preventive protocols.
The commercial hub, Lagos state, still retains the highest number of infected persons followed by Delta State and the Federal Capital Territory. While previous weeks were filled with reports of scammers defrauding people with covid-19 related schemes, this week has news of people defrauding the system by breaking laid down protocols and presenting fake test results.
Here is everything of interest that happened.
132 people wanted for breaking Covid-19 protocol
Another 132 travellers who recently came into Nigeria but violated the laid down protocols at the point of arrival may have their passports disabled or their visas revoked for at least 1 year.
New arrivals are to undergo a 7-day quarantine at the port health facilities before they can move about in the country. However, the alleged violators skipped this part of the protocol and joined the rest of the country’s inhabitants without being cleared.
A statement by the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on the covid-19 pointed out that the said violators came in from Brazil, Turkey and India.
Kano speaker allegedly presents fake test result and skips isolation
The Speaker of the Kano State House of Assembly, Hamisu Chidari, has been declared wanted by the PSC for violating the Covid-19 protocols after his return to Nigeria on May 17.
A Premium Times report says that Chidari returned from Saudi Arabia and presented a covid-19 test result that was later discovered by authorities to be fake. In addition, he was expected to isolate himself at the National Women Development Centre and be observed with others for 7 days immediately after landing at the airport.
He, however, offered to self-isolate at the Nicon Luxury Hotel in Abuja, saying that he did not like the centre that was provided. But he did not isolate there either and medical authorities were unable to monitor him.
He has been declared a ‘Person of Interest’ along with others who also evaded isolation. This set of people will undergo isolation all over again as well as face the appropriate sanctions for betraying the country’s trust.
WHO approves Sinovac for coronavirus treatment
The World Health Organization has approved China’s Sinovac vaccine for use against the coronavirus. This is the first vaccine to be approved from China after Sinopharm.
The emergency approval will ensure that more countries get access to the needed vaccines as funders and procuring agencies now have the assurance that it meets the international standards for safety, efficacy and manufacturing.
Like AstraZeneca, Sinovac is also a two-dose vaccine and is already being used in 22 countries round the world.
Nigeria’s vaccine program best in Africa
Nigeria has the best vaccination rollout program among African countries. The World Health Organization Country Representative, Dr. Kazadi Mulombo, said this at a press briefing in Abuja.
Vaccine availability in Africa is still lagging behind that of other regions. However, the thousands of doses that are available in some countries still end up being wasted because they are not used before their expiration dates. To prevent waste, some countries distribute it to others for use.
Mulombo said, “In Africa, we are witnessing a kind of paradox. While on the one hand, the continent has received less of its share in terms of vaccines through the COVAX facility and other mechanisms… Nigeria is among the countries that are distributing the most covid-19 vaccine as we speak.
“At the same time, we have a number of African countries that are losing the vaccines because they expired before they could be used. Some are redistributing the vaccines elsewhere. So, it is kind of sending a contradictory message about the need for vaccines to end the acute phase of the pandemic.”
Nigerian related Covid-19 variant has made its way to India
There are now 6 Covid-19 variants of interest in the world and one of them is the B.1.525, which has been linked back to Nigeria. The variant has been found in Australia, Denmark and other countries and has been connected to people who travelled to Nigeria and got infected.
In the midst of the surge of cases in India, samples that were randomly analysed and sequenced in April and May showed that this variant is also now present in the country. As efforts to stem the surge of infections continue, this new trend as well as others are being monitored to determine its impact on the covid-19 situation.
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