Tag Archives: asia

Just in: China defends COVID-19 at WHO assembly.

President Xi Jinping says Beijing has always been transparent and promises $2bn in global COVID-19 aid.


  • World leaders have spoken at the virtual meeting of the World Health Assembly, as many countries have called for an independent probe into the pandemic.
  • Chinese President Xi Jinping says Beijing has always been transparent about the outbreak and will support a probe once the pandemic is under control.
  • India reports 5,242 new cases of coronavirus, taking the country’s infection tally to more than 96,000, the highest in Asia.
  • Globally, there have been more than 4.7 million known cases of COVID-19, and nearly 315,000 people have died, according to Johns Hopkins University. More than 1.7 million people have recovered.

#Newsworthy…

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[United States] There May Be Revenge For COVID-19 – Rage As Trump Threatens China.

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US President Donald Trump suggested he may seek damages from China over the coronavirus pandemic which began in the Chinese city of Wuhan and spread around the world, prompting a furious response from Beijing on Tuesday.

Beijing and Washington have clashed repeatedly over the outbreak as tensions have soared between the world’s two biggest economic powers.

“We are not happy with China,” Trump said at a White House briefing Monday. “We are not happy with that whole situation because we believe it could have been stopped at the source.

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“It could have been stopped quickly and it wouldn’t have spread all over the world,” he said, saying there were many options to “hold them accountable”.

Trump was asked about a recent German newspaper editorial which called on China to pay Germany $165 billion in reparations because of economic damage due to the virus.

Asked if the US would consider doing the same, Trump said: “we can do something much easier than that.”

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“Germany is looking at things, we are looking at things,” he said. “We haven’t determined the final amount yet,” Trump said.

In Beijing, a foreign ministry spokesman on Tuesday accused US politicians of “telling barefaced lies”, without naming Trump specifically, and of ignoring their “own serious problems”.

“American politicians have repeatedly ignored the truth and have been telling barefaced lies,” Geng Shuang told reporters at a regular press briefing.

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“They have only one objective: shirk their responsibility for their own poor epidemic prevention and control measures, and divert public attention.”

Geng said US politicians should “reflect on their own problems and find ways to contain the outbreak as quickly as possible.”


Tensions and doubt


There have been nearly a million infections with more than 56,000 coronavirus-related deaths in the United States and the pandemic has shut down huge swathes of the economy.

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In China, the outbreak seems to be under control with no new deaths reported for 13 straight days and the toll standing at 4,633 — although several countries have cast doubt over whether the numbers are accurate.

Trump and his Secretary of State Mike Pompeo angered Beijing last month by repeatedly referring to “the Chinese virus” when discussing the COVID-19 outbreak — although they later appeared to drop the term.

But a foreign ministry spokesman in Beijing later suggested that it was the US military which brought the virus to Wuhan — prompting angry claims from Trump that China was spreading misinformation.

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Since then the US president has repeatedly attacked China’s lack of transparency and the slowness of its initial response to the outbreak.

Claims from the US that the virus actually originated in a virology institute in Wuhan with a high-security biosafety laboratory have also been angrily refuted in China.


#Newsworthy…

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Nigerian govt react to alleged mistreat of citizens in China.


The Federal Government has reacted to the alleged maltreatment of Nigerians in Guanzhou, China in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

In a press conference on Tuesday in Abuja, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, blamed the maltreatment on poor communication by the Chinese authorities.


Onyeama explained that a thorough investigation carried out by the Chinese and Nigerian authorities revealed that a group of Nigerians in the last flight to Guanzhou tested positive for COVID-19 including a Nigerian lady who owns a restaurant in the city.

While noting that the Chinese government insisted they be quarantined with strict measures, the minister stressed that the videos circulating online were of Nigerians who flouted the strict measures and the measures to check them were misinterpreted.


According to him, a Nigerian national who tested positive for the virus wanted to leave the hospital after a week of quarantine and when he was restrained, he bit a nurse.

He noted that Nigerian officials have met with Chinese officials to register their displeasure and the Chinese government assured them that they have zero tolerance for racism, adding that they were on top of the situation.

He added that the Chinese government especially the Guanzhou authorities should have communicated with the Nigerian consulate in China.

Onyeama is of the view that efforts towards the quarantine of Nigerians who tested positive to coronavirus, coupled with strict measures to be adopted following the flouting of the quarantine should have been a joint effort between both countries.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: India extend lockdown till May 3.


India’s nationwide coronavirus lockdown, the biggest in the world covering 1.3 billion people, will be extended until May 3, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said Tuesday.

The move comes despite complaints
millions of poor, a vast underclass who have been left almost completely without support as jobs have vanished and incomes dried up.

“From the economic angle, we have paid a big price,” Modi said. “But the lives of the people of India are far more valuable.”

“From the experiences of the last few days, it is clear that the path we have chosen is correct.”

India’s current three-week-old lockdown, in force since March 25, had been scheduled to end at midnight Tuesday.

Modi said there would be “limited relaxations” from April 20 for districts with no cases, and new guidelines for industry and agriculture would be released on Wednesday.

The announcement comes as debate rages around the world on how to lift restrictions so that the economic carnage of the pandemic can be eased without a new spike in infections.

Official figures suggest South Asian nations have so far been relatively unscathed by the epidemic, with around 10,000 cases and 339 deaths in India.

Some experts say India has not conducted enough tests and that the true number of infections is much higher.

And with some of the most crowded cities on the planet, there are fears that numbers could take off and overwhelm the shaky healthcare system.

Several states including Maharashtra — home to Mumbai and with the highest number of cases — Tamil Nadu and Odisha have already announced lockdown extensions.

The World Health Organisation Tuesday praised India’s decision to extend the lockdown, saying “it would go a long way in arresting the virus spread”.

“Despite huge and multiple challenges, India has been displaying unwavering commitment in its fight against the pandemic,” WHO regional director Poonam Khetrapal Singh said in a statement.


India’s poor


The shutdown, with strict limits on activity, has been devastating for the economy — and in particular for India’s poor.

Millions of daily wage labourers suddenly lost their jobs, forcing hundreds of thousands to travel hundreds of kilometres (miles) back to their home villages, often on foot.

Some died on the way, while others were shunned by locals when they made it back. One clip that went viral on social media showed a group of migrants being hosed down with chemicals by local officials.

Others have been stranded in cities in cramped, unsanitary conditions where the virus could spread quickly.

New Delhi alone is providing hundreds of thousands of free meals.


Snarl-Ups


Farmers have complained of a lack of workers to harvest crops while snarl-ups of thousands of trucks not allowed to move because of the lockdown have hampered food transport.

“We have tried to keep the interests of the poor and the daily wage workers in mind while making these new guidelines,” Modi said in his 24-minute address.

“The central and state governments are working together to ensure that the farmers don’t face any problems.”

Reserve Bank of India governor Shaktikanta Das has called the coronavirus an “invisible assassin” that could wreak havoc on the economy.

A restaurant industry group, a sector that employs millions of people nationwide, warned Monday there could be “social unrest” if it did not receive financial relief.

The commerce ministry has also reportedly urged the government to consider opening more activities “with reasonable safeguards” even if the lockdown is extended.

Even before the pandemic, the Indian economy was stuttering, with the highest unemployment for decades.

Growth had slowed to about 5.0 percent before the pandemic and some analysts say it could slump to 1.5-2.0 percent this year — way below the level needed to provide jobs for the millions coming into the labour market each month.


#Newsworthy…

We didn’t maltreat African residents – China denies.


For the second time in less than one week, the Republic of China has again restated its commitment to warm relationship with African countries.

Zhao Lijian’s, its Foreign Ministry spokesperson made the remarks in a statement issued last night in Abuja, against the background of alleged discriminatory practises against Africans resident in the city of Guangdong.


The Speaker of the House of Representatives Honourable Femi Gbajabiamila had last week summoned the Chinese Ambassador in Nigeria, Zhou Pingjian, to express displeasure over similar maltreatment of Nigerians resident in another Chinese city, Guangzhou.

But the spokesman of the Chinese Embassy in Nigeria claimed that those raising concern over maltreatment in Guangdong were foreigners bent on observing in the breach China anti-epidemic measures.


While insisting that there was no discriminatory practises, Lijian’s further argued that the deadly scourge could only be combated by mutual cooperation of China and nationals of other countries resident in China.

The statement read in part: ”During our fight against the coronavirus, the Chinese government has been attaching great importance to the life and health of foreign nationals in China. All foreigners are treated equally. We reject differential treatment, and we have zero tolerance for discrimination.


“Since the outbreak, the authorities in Guangdong attach high importance to the treatment of foreign patients, including African nationals.

Specific plans and proper arrangements are made to protect their life and health to the best of our ability, thanks to which we were able to save the lives of some African patients in severe or critical conditions.


“The Guangdong authorities attach great importance to some African countries’ concerns and are working promptly to improve their working method.

The measures include: to provide health management services without differentiation, to designate hotels for the accommodation of foreigners required to undergo medical observation and adopt price adjustment for those in financial difficulties; to set up effective communication mechanism with foreign consulates-general in Guangzhou; and to reject all racist and discriminatory remarks.


“The Chinese people always see in the African people partners and brothers through thick and thin. China-Africa friendship is unbreakable as it is deeply rooted in this land. African friends can count on getting fair, just, cordial and friendly reception in China.

The foreign ministry will stay in close communication with the Guangdong authorities and continue responding to the African side’s reasonable concerns and legitimate appeals.


“The virus knows no borders. The pandemic, a challenge to all mankind, can only be defeated through concerted international efforts. With mutual understanding, mutual support and cooperation, we are ready to continue working with African friends to achieve the final victory.”

The statement further recalled assistance given to States in the continent in the past during the outbreak of Ebola Virus and the recent pandemic, Coronavirus.


“China and Africa are good friends, partners and brothers. Our friendship is forged on the basis of joint efforts to seek national independence, liberation, economic development and better livelihood in the past decades. Such time-tested friendship is a treasure for both Chinese and African people. Humanity shines through the darkness of the epidemic.

After the Ebola epidemics broke out in three West African countries in 2014, the Chinese government provided assistance at the earliest time possible and fought side by side with the African countries and people.


“Now faced with the COVID-19 pandemic, China and Africa are again tiding over difficulties hand in hand, and our friendship is again elevated. We will not forget the support from Africa during our most difficult times. While overcoming difficulties at home, we also give love and care to all African citizens in China, especially African students.

As the situation is getting more severe in Africa, the Chinese government and people have urgently delivered batches of supplies to the continent. Our assistance, conveying deep friendship for our African brothers and sisters, demonstrates our fine tradition of mutual assistance and mutual support, and has been highly acclaimed by African countries and the African Union.

While arduously fight the virus at home, China has donated large amounts of test kits, masks, protective suits, goggles, face shields, forehead thermometers, medical-use gloves, shoe covers, ventilators and other supplies to the African Union and African countries. We will continue helping our African brothers to the best of our ability.”


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: China confirm 99 new cases.


China recorded 99 new cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) on Sunday.

97 of these cases were said to have been imported into the country from abroad.


The 97 imported new cases of Coronavirus in China represents the highest daily increase in imported cases recorded, surpassing the previous record of 67.

New confirmed cases in mainland China reached 99 on April 11 from 46 the previous day, with all but two involving travellers from abroad. In commercial hub Shanghai, 51 Chinese nationals flying in on the same flight from Russia tested positive.


“The risk of imported cases has increased dramatically,” Wen Guohui, mayor of Guangzhou, an economic hub in Southern China, told a news conference on Sunday.

Guangzhou is enforcing anti-virus measures on anyone who enters the city from across the national border, regardless of nationality, race or gender, foreign affairs official Liu Baochun said at the same event.

“We hope foreigners can strictly abide by anti-virus rules as Chinese do,” he said.

In the northeastern province of Heilongjiang, which reported 21 new, Russia-imported cases on April 11, the local government said its Suifenhe border with Russia will remain closed after April 13. The border was temporarily closed on April 9 to contain the epidemic, and was scheduled to open next week


#Newsworthy…

WHO calls for China, US unity to fight COVID-19


The World Health Organization on Wednesday urged the United States and China to join forces to fight the coronavirus pandemic, saying there would be “many more body bags” without international unity.

“The United States and China should come together and fight this dangerous enemy,” WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus told a virtual briefing in Geneva, following criticism from US President Donald Trump that the UN health body “blew it” and was “very China centric”.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Chinese doctors, nurses to arrive Nigeria.


The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, on Friday, said that Chinese doctors, nurses and medical experts would arrive in Nigeria in a few days to assist in the fight against COVID-19.

The minister said this during a briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja.

Cases in Nigeria have reached 210 as the global figure also surpassed one million mark. He said Nigeria was also exploring the possibility of producing some medical equipment after key stakeholders met in Abuja on Thursday.

The coming of the Chinese medical experts was announced just as the Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, said efforts to contain COVID-19 in Nigeria were being limited by finance, manpower and other indices despite the support from government and individuals.

Ehanire said, “The global number has crossed one million mark, barely three months after the first cases were first reported in Wuhan, China. It is an indication that it is a public health challenge that we must not take lightly.”

He continued, “We are already seeing what may be the indication of community transmission, in that 30 per cent of the cases have incomplete epidemiological information. 51 per cent are imported cases and 19 per cent are through contacts of known cases.

“Directors of the Federal Ministry of Health had discussions with the Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investment and Manufacturers Association of Nigeria to explore the potential for local production of medical consumables such as face masks, gloves, sanitisers and even ventilators.

“This is in view of looming global shortages of medical supplies for the response due to high demands from all countries. Clinical trials and other processes are ongoing to validate various therapeutic for COVID-19 treatment.”

After the briefing, Nigeria recorded 20 new cases: 11 in Lagos State, three in FCT, three in Edo State, two in Osun State and one in Ondo State.


Chinese medical supplies coming


Ehanire said he had been notified of medical supplies from China courtesy of a group of Chinese companies working in Nigeria.

“A special cargo aircraft shall leave Nigeria in a few days to collect the items which include Personal Protective Equipment and ventilators.

“Of great interest is that an 18-man team of medical experts from China, including doctors, nurses and medical experts shall come along with the flight to assist us,” he said.


More COVID-19 cases expected


The minister said more cases might be detected during the remaining days of the lockdown window, calling on officials to speed up their work.

He said, “We are using the small window of opportunity remaining to intensify investigation to identify cases and sources. This is one of the purposes of the lockdown of the two states (Lagos and Ogun) and the FCT.

“Lagos and other parts will need to speed up their activities to detect and isolate COVID-19 patients.

“We expect to see an increase in cases during the lockdown as a measure of improvement in case finding. If all measures and social distancing are followed, the incidence of positive cases can be controlled.”


Efforts limited by money, manpower


However, at the briefing, NCDC Director-General, Chikwe Ihekweazu, said the major focus of the government was to increase capacity for testing more samples in the next few days while also lamenting limitation of finance, infrastructure and human resources.

He said, “We are not just limited by funds and infrastructure, but the biggest limitation is human resources; the people that are already trained in bio-nuclear diagnostic testing. This is not something you can take up people and ask them to volunteer and go into the laboratory and start testing.”

Ihekweazu noted that so far, Nigeria had tested samples from about 4,000 people, with more laboratories being added to the existing ones.

He added, “Today, we have tested about 4,000 people and we will continue to drive up this number. We have fulfilled every requirement for a test so there is nobody that has come forward (without being tested). There has been some delay but every single sample that has come forward has been tested.

“Currently, we have added one more laboratory. We now have eight testing laboratories. We have three laboratories working independently in Lagos; the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Nigerian Institute for Medical Research and the Biosecurity Centre in Lagos that used to work with LUTH. It has been completely separated.

“Ibadan and Abakaliki test centres have been activated already. Today (Friday), we are activating the second laboratory in Abuja to support everyone around the area. The next town is Kano; between Sunday and Monday, it will be activated for the northern part of Nigeria.”

Stating the contribution of the private sector, Ihekweazu said, “We have some exciting proposals that we are working through with private sector. They have come on board to support us in doing this.

“Some public sector organisations that have private-sector affiliations like the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Fund Authority are working with us on the proposal to increase laboratory locations in Nigeria. There is a lot of work going on in the background to increase our testing capacity.

“I want to remind everyone that testing will not solve this problem. There is a lot of focus on testing and energy going into it and research at a global stage to validate rapid diagnostic test kits that are being sold around the world. We are waiting for those results. Once they are validated, we will start offering it, until then, we cannot offer it.”

The NCDC DG debunked the insinuation that high-profile people were being favoured in the testing procedure, saying case definition was being followed strictly.


6,700 contacts identified


Ihekweazu said in terms of contact tracing, the NCDC had identified about 6,700 contacts cumulatively.

“Some of them have graduated out; when you follow a contact for 14 days and he does not become ill, we graduate the case out of the contact list. As of yesterday (Thursday), we have followed up on 71 per cent of that,” he said.


Jack Ma kits under validation


Ihekweazu also noted that the test kits donated by Chinese billionaire, Jack Ma, had yet to be used because they were being validated. He said this on the backdrop of insinuation that some Chinese kits were faulty.

He noted, “We will never deploy a test kit until we validate it. That process is ongoing. We are still using the kits we had before the donation from Jack Ma came in.

“Once we are sure that they (the kits) will provide answers equivalent to the test case we have, then we will deploy them.”


Lagos, Abuja to have mobile testing centres


On the need to increase testing, Ihekweazu said the mobile testing centres currently being used in South Africa would soon be in use in Lagos and Abuja. He, however, explained that they were only going to be used to collect samples.


FG mobilises evacuation of foreign-based Nigerians


The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 has said the Federal Government in collaboration with the foreign missions and that embassies are taking steps to effect the evacuation of Nigerians in the Diaspora amid the global coronavirus pandemic.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, who spoke during a live briefing of the PTF in Abuja on Friday, said the Federal Government would ascertain the number of affected Nigerians before deciding on its approach for evacuation.


FG reviews flight protocol, allows crews rest


Meanwhile, the Federal Government has reviewed its protocol on flights amid the lockdown in Lagos, Ogun and the Federal Capital Territory over the coronavirus.

The Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, had, during a live briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 on Tuesday, made exemptions for diplomatic flights, aircraft carrying food, medical equipment and other humanitarian items, as well as those in distress, among others.

He, however, added that all pilots and crew would be required to remain on board.

But during a similar briefing of the PTF in Abuja on Friday, Sirika noted some changes to the protocol for flights.


Ogun third case now negative —Abiodun


Ogun State Governor, Dapo Abiodun on Friday, said the 62-year-old third case of coronavirus in the state had been tested negative and would be discharged on Friday night.

Abiodun said the male patient, who returned to Nigeria from the United Kingdom on March 17, and tested positive for COVID–19, had been tested twice.


Oyo records five new suspected cases


The Oyo State COVID-19 Emergency Operation Centre indicated on Saturday that a total of five suspected cases had been received at the centre in the last 24 hours.

As of the time of filing this report, there were a total of 50 suspected cases of the viral infection in the state, while a total of 50 samples had been taken for test.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: UK announces high death, overtakes China.


The UK announced 684 more coronavirus deaths on Friday, more than the 569 on Thursday.

The new fatalities take the national total to 3,605, far ahead of China with 3,322 deaths.


NHS England, which collects data on the deaths said 604 of the new fatalities happened in its hospitals, with patients aged between 24 and 100.

Thirty-four of the patients had been healthy before they caught COVID-19 and they ranged in age from 27 and 92.


The figures show that young people with no long-term illnesses can still be killed by the infection.

Since Tuesday, the UK has been announcing more victims on daily.


In just one week, the number of people dead from COVID-19 rose five-fold from 759 on 27 March.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock said the fatality figures next week may likely be worse.


Scientists said the increases being seen each day are ‘expected’ and they are the consequences of the country going late into lockdown.

Public Health England said 173,784 people have been tested for the coronavirus.

Out of the lot, 38,174 tested positive.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: China ban eating of snakes, frogs, dogs, cats, others.


The legislation was yesterday passed by lawmakers in Shenzhen, a city of around 13 million people, and will take effect on May 1, according to a government notice.

The news comes after China banned all trade and consumption of wild animals, a practice, which scientists believe is responsible for the deadly virus infecting and killing people globally.


The officials described the new regulation as the ‘universal civilisation requirement for a modern society’ and said the aim is to ‘further satisfy the daily needs of the people’.

According to the document, nine types of livestock are suitable for people to eat. They are pigs, cows, sheep, donkeys, rabbits, chickens, ducks, geese and pigeons.


Residents are also allowed to dine on aquatic animals permitted by law.

Before the law was passed, one spokesperson said the authority wanted to make it easier for people to know what can be eaten.


‘There are so many animal species in nature. In our country alone, there are more than 2,000 kinds of protected wild animal species.

‘If the local authority is to produce a list of the wild animals that cannot be eaten, it will be too lengthy and cannot answer the question exactly what animals can be eaten,’ the official said.

In China, coronavirus has claimed 3,312 lives and infected more than 81,500 people since the outbreak started in Wuhan


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: China’s measure may have prevented 700,000 cases.


China’s control measures during the first 50 days of the COVID-19 epidemic may have delayed the spread of the virus to cities outside of Wuhan by several days and, by interrupting transmission nationwide, prevented more than 700,000 infections across the country, according to an international team of researchers. The findings, published today (March 31) in the journal Science, could be useful to countries that are still in early phases of the COVID-19 outbreak.

“The number of confirmed cases in China by day 50 (February 19) of the epidemic, was around 30,000,” said Christopher Dye, visiting professor of zoology and visiting fellow at the Oxford Martin School, University of Oxford. “Our analysis suggests that without the Wuhan travel ban and the national emergency response there would have been more than 700,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases outside of Wuhan by that date. China’s control measures appear to have worked by successfully breaking the chain of transmission—preventing contact between infectious and susceptible people.”


The researchers used a unique combination of case reports, human movement data and public health intervention information to investigate the spread and control of COVID-19. They examined the movements of 4.3 million people out of Wuhan before the travel ban, the types and timing of control measures implemented across the cities of China and the numbers of COVID-19 cases reported each day in every city.

“One fascinating aspect of our work is that it shows the power of novel data streams such as cell phone mobility data,” said Ottar Bjornstad, distinguished professor of entomology and biology, Penn State. “Since the time period we studied included the Spring Festival holiday and Chinese Lunar New Year, we were able to compare patterns of travel into and out of Wuhan during the outbreak with cell phone data from two previous spring festivals. The analysis revealed an extraordinary reduction in movement following the travel ban of January 23, 2020. Based on this data, we could also calculate the likely reduction in Wuhan-associated cases in other cities across China.”


The team’s model also analyzed the specific effects of the Wuhan shutdown and found that it delayed the arrival of COVID-19 in other cities by several days. “This delay provided extra time to prepare for the arrival of COVID-19 in more than 130 cities,” said Huaiyu Tian, associate professor of epidemiology, Beijing Normal University.

These cities banned public gatherings, closed entertainment venues and suspended public transport, among other actions. As a result, they reported 33% fewer confirmed cases during the first week of their outbreaks than cities that did not implement a Level 1 Response.


While the control measures taken thus far have reduced the number of COVID-19 infections to very low levels, China, is by no means out of the woods.

“Given the small fraction of the Chinese population that has been infected, a much larger number of people remains at risk of COVID-19,” said Tian. “We are acutely aware that resident or imported infections could lead to a resurgence of transmission.”

Bjornstad noted that SARS-CoV-2 may establish as a human endemic globally in the years to come.

“It is critical to keep in mind that this virgin epidemic likely will affect people of different ages and susceptibilities, and therefore have different fatality levels, than possible subsequent seasonal epidemics,” he said.


#Newsworthy..

COVID-19: 14% of recovered patients in China test positive again.


Up to 14% of recovered coronavirus patients in China have reportedly tested positive again after being discharged from the hospital.

Doctors at a hospital in Wuhan, China, where the virus emerged reported that between 3 and 14% of cured patients became reinfected with the illness, though it’s unclear whether they were contagious the second time, the South China Morning Post reported.


The news comes as experts raised an alarm that China is facing a second outbreak due to the increasing number of imported cases as well as the ‘silent carriers’ who show no symptoms.

Tongji Hospital, which identified the first COVID-19 case, confirmed that five of 145 patients, a little over 3% tested positive again in nucleic acid tests, according to state broadcaster CCTV.


“So far there is no evidence to suggest that they are infectious,” said Wang Wei, the hospital’s president.

According to him, five patients who tested positive again did not have any symptoms and none of their close contacts had been infected.


He added that surveillance of similar patients showed that 80 to 90% had no trace of the virus in their system one month after being discharged from the hospital, according to the report.

But he said: ‘these are just “small samples” and “not enough to assure us of the validity of our initial findings. We need a large-scale epidemiological study to guide our disease surveillance and prevention works.”

Health news outlet Life Times, which is affiliated with state-run newspaper People’s Daily also reported that other quarantine facilities in Wuhan have seen about 5 to 10% of their recovered patients test positive again.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: China shut her borders at Non-nationals.


China will close its borders to most foreigners starting Saturday, the government announced Thursday, amid continued concerns over rising imported cases of novel coronavirus.

Foreign nationals currently holding Chinese visas or residency permits will be temporarily banned from entering the country until further notice, according to a statement from the foreign ministry and the national immigration authority.


The government is also suspending all visa-free transit and visa-on-landing programs. People holding diplomatic passports are exempted from the new rule.

Foreign nationals who must visit China out of necessity need to apply for new visas, and holders of Chinese visas issued after Thursday will be allowed into the country, the statement added.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Case returns to China.

79 new cases in China – NHS

1 case in wuhan


Mainland China saw a doubling in new coronavirus cases, including one in the central city of Wuhan, where the pandemic started late in 2019.

Infected travellers arriving from abroad caused the jump in cases.


And for the first time in days, locally transmitted cases crept into the daily tally. .

China had 78 new cases on Monday, the National Health Commission said, a two-fold increase from a day earlier.


Of the new cases, 74 were imported infections, up from 39 a day earlier.

Wuhan, capital of Hubei province and epicentre of the outbreak in China, reported one new case, the National Health Commission said on Tuesday, following five days of no new infections.

Other parts of the country reported local infections.


#Newsworthy…

Hantavirus: Nigerians react to another virus kill man in China.

despite the multi killing of coronavirus.

Hantavirus comes up, kill 1 in China


A man from China’s Yunnan Province has died of Hantavirus, a new virus, while on his way to Shandong Province for work on a charter bus on Monday. NobleReporters

He tested positive for the virus, while 32 other people on the bus were also tested according to reports.


Hantavirus is currently trending on social media, following the death.

Ortho-hantavirus is a single-stranded, enveloped, negative-sense RNA virus in the family Hantaviridae of the order Bunyavirales.


These viruses normally infect rodents, but do not cause disease in them.

Humans may become infected with hantaviruses through contact with rodent urine, saliva, or feces.


The Coronavirus currently ravaging the world first emanated from Wuhan Province in China, and has since spread to 197 countries.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: 6 more suspected cases quarantined in Nigeria.


The Lagos State Government says it has quarantined 6 more suspects of Coronavirus while a set of 3 contacts of the index case who have been isolated Lagos tested Negative

Among the new suspects are a family of four children and their teacher who recently returned from the United States of America. They are now at the Biosecurity Facility of the Mainland Infectious Disease Hospital, Yaba.


Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Professor Akin Abayomi who disclosed this on Wednesday evening while giving an updates on Coronavirus in Lagos stated that the 4 children and their teacher got in close contact with someone who had Coronavirus infection.

Senate sets up Joint Committee as Nigeria prepares for worse oil prices
Though the first test carried out on them turned negative, the Commissioner said confirmation tests will still be repeated to determine the next point of action.


He explained that the index case is responding well to treatment adding that his viral load is going down significantly with no symptoms exhibited. He however stated that he cannot be released into the community now until the virus is undetectable and cannot infect others.

On the second confirmed case, Abayomi noted that he is doing well with no major symptoms but only exhibits minor aches and pain.

Meanwhile, the 2 passengers on the Turkish Airline who could not be traced because of wrong information have also been found within 24 hours after their names were published by the media.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Outbreak among corps members in Ondo camp – NYSC.


The National Youth Service Corps (NYSC) in Ondo state says it has equipped its orientation camp to prevent any coronavirus outbreak among corps members.

Nigeria had confirmed two cases of the zoonotic disease ever since it broke out in the Chinese city of Wuhan.

Grace Akpabio, NYSC’s coordinator in Ondo, on Tuesday, said the scheme is adopting “proactive measures” to prevent any outbreak on camp.


She said the secretariat deployed hand sanitizers, washing basins, and other medical supplies to hostels and other strategic places at the Ikare Akoko orientation camp.

According to her, the move had come in compliance with the health safety measures approved during a pre-orientation workshop held at the directorate headquarters in Abuja.


“I assure prospective corps members posted to Ondo state that we’ve done what’s humanly possible to prevent any outbreak of diseases in our camp,” the state coordinator said.

“We have enough hand gloves and face masks to go round. Some measures put in place are thorough clearing and cleaning of the whole landmass on which the camp is situated.

“We have equally replaced nets of all doors and windows which were torn by previous participants. We do not stop at that, all ceiling fans have been serviced and they are working perfectly well.”

NYSC earlier made headlines after claims spread that it had diverted funds meant for corps members’ February allowance to the ongoing fight against coronavirus in the country.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Tunisia confirms 6th case.


Tunisia has recorded sixth confirmed case of the deadly coronavirus disease, the country’s health ministry announced on Tuesday.

According to info gathered by NobleReporters, head of Primary Health Care Department at the Ministry of Health, Chokri Hamouda, said 44 tests were carried out on Tuesday and one was identified positive for the virus.


The ministry informed that the new case was detected in the district of Boumerdes in the province of Mahdia on the east coast of Tunisia.

The sixth case is said to be a relative of the second case, a 65-year-old Tunisian who returned from Italy and had also infected his wife.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Lagos monitoring 349 persons from virus affected countries.


The Lagos State Government on Saturday March 8, disclosed that it is monitoring 349 persons from countries where coronavirus have been confirmed.

In a tweet shared on the official Twitter handle of Lagos State Commissioner of Health Prof Akin Abayomi, it was gathered that 50 new samples have been collected for analysis.

The tweet reads;

“One confirmed case identified. 50 new samples collected for analysis.

“349 Persons of interest from endemic countries under follow up. Training of stakeholders and awareness on #COVID19 ongoing.”

Coronavirus: Lagos monitoring 349 persons from endemic countries

Coronavirus: Lagos monitoring 349 persons from endemic countries

Coronavirus: Lagos monitoring 349 persons from endemic countries

Coronavirus: Lagos monitoring 349 persons from endemic countries

Coronavirus: Lagos monitoring 349 persons from endemic countries


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Togo admit first case


Togo on Friday confirmed its first case of the novel coronavirus after a 42-year-old woman tested positive following her return from a trip to Benin, Germany, France, and Turkey.

The presidency in the West African nation of eight million people said the patient, who lives in the capital Lome with her family, was “currently isolated in a treatment center for infectious diseases” after testing positive on Thursday.


“From February 22 to March 2, 2020, she visited Benin, Germany, France, and Turkey before returning to Togo via the land border with Benin,” the presidency said in a statement.

It said all people who had contact with the patient in the country “have been identified and put in quarantine.”

In sub-Saharan Africa, Senegal has registered four cases, all foreign nationals, and South Africa, Nigeria and Cameroon have one case each since the outbreak emerged in December in China.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Buhari releases N620m to fight virus.


The Federal government has released N620 million for the fight against coronavirus.

Minister of Finance, Zainab Ahmed, in a statement released on Friday March 6th, said the approval and release of the funds by President Buhari was based on emergency.

She said the first tranche of N364 million was earlier released, making a total of N984 million released to tackle the spread of the virus in the country.


“The approval by President Muhammadu Buhari for the release of funds to tackle COVID-19 was an emergency and the process of releasing the fund was also an emergency as it was an unexpected expenditure,” the statement read.

“However, the Ministry of Finance, Budget and National Planning had released the first tranche of N364 million sometime ago and the process of releasing the second tranche has been concluded with the release of N620 million this morning, bringing total release to N984 million.

President Muhammadu Buhari

“Responding to a media enquiry yesterday, the Honourable Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs. Zainab Ahmed, promised that the second tranche of the needed fund would be released today, which has been done, keeping to the promise.” she said

Nigeria recorded its first case of the virus on February 24th.


#Newsworthy…