Tag Archives: Happening

COVID-19: Nigeria confirm 14 new infection as total cases hit 288.


The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control has confirmed 14 new coronavirus cases, bringing the number of infections in the country to 288, as announced via its Twitter handle on Thursday evening.

Nigeria Centre for Disease Control tweeted, “14 new cases of #COVID-19 have been reported in Nigeria: 13 in Lagos State and one in Delta State.


“As of 09:30 pm on the 9th of April, there are 288 confirmed cases of #COVID-19 reported in Nigeria. 51 have been discharged with seven deaths.”

TopNaija earlier reported that governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu announced the discharge of seven more COVID-19 patients from the Infectious Disease Hospital in Yaba, Lagos.

This brings the number of patients discharged in Lagos to 39.


#Newsworthy…

DisCos support plan to give Nigerians 2-month free electricity.


Power distribution companies in Nigeria (Discos) on Wednesday threw their weight behind proposal by the National Assembly and the Federal Executive arm of government that Nigerians should get two months of free electricity.

Speaking through their umbrella body, the Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors, the Discos stated that modalities for the free power would be worked on and made public in due course.


The Executive Director, ANED, Sunday Oduntan, disclosed this in a statement issued in Abuja on Wednesday night.

He said, “The electricity distribution companies recognise the challenging effects of the coronavirus on the economic and daily lives of our customers.


“In fulfillment of our commitments to the nation, we hereby align ourselves with the efforts of the National Assembly and the Federal Executive to mitigate the hardship that is currently being borne by our customers and other citizens all over the country.”

Oduntan added, “We are committed to working with them to ensure more efficient power supply within this difficult period, as the nation battles with the ravages of COVID-19.


“We are also completely aligned with the plans to ensure palliative measures, including free electricity supply to all Nigerians for two months, to make life easier, during the lockdown period. Details of implementation to come soon.”

He reiterated the commitment of the Discos to improving service delivery to the nation during the period of the coronavirus pandemic and thereafter.


Meanwhile, the management of the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company on Wednesday said it had set aside N100m to support the fight against COVID-19 pandemic within its operational area.

The electricity company said this while donating food items worth N10m to the Oyo State Government as part of measures to combat COVID-19 in the state.


IBEDC also donated N5m to the University College Hospital Ibadan in support of the institution’s efforts at combating the deadly virus.

The Chief Operating Officer, IBEDC, John Ayodele, during the presentation of the relief items at the Ministry of Agriculture, Oyo State Secretariat, said the food items were part of the N100m earmarked to support the states in its areas of jurisdiction.


Ayodele, who was represented on the occasion by the Regional Head of IBEDC, Peter Oyelami, lauded both the government for measures taken in the fight against the scourge.

He said, “IBEDC, as a law-abiding corporate citizen and socially responsible organisation, has earmarked about N100m for relief items namely rice, noodles and semovita.


“This gesture encompasses the states we cover namely Ogun, Oyo, Osun and Kwara, and partly Niger, Kogi and Ekiti states.”

In a related development, the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution has donated four truckloads of rice to support the palliative measures in Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River and Rivers states.


The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, PHED, Dr Henry Ajagbawa, disclosed this in a statement on Wednesday by the Manager, Corporate Communications, John Onyi.

He also promised regular supply of electricity during the period of the lockdown to enable the residents to live a comfortable life.

“The same donations taking place here are being replicated across all the states within our coverage.”


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Oyo extends curfew instead of total lockdown. (Nigeria)


The Oyo State Government on Thursday extended the curfew imposed to combat the spread of COVID-19 pandemic.

The Government had imposed a 7pm- to 6 am curfew instead of full lockdown of the state to limit movement of people.


It also disclosed that it has hit the N200million mark from donors to the Endowment Fund to generate financial support in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.

Chief Press Secretary to Governor Seyi Makinde, Mr Taiwo Adisa, in a statement, said the Government would inform the general public if there will be a review to the curfew arrangement.


Additionally, Adisa said barely a week after the Oyo State COVID-19 Endowment Fund was set up, donations from corporate organisations, religious groups and individuals from within and outside the State have continued to flow in.

He named a former Governor Senator Rashidi Ladoja; a PDP chieftain, Alhaji Yekini Adeojo; Mr Remi Oseni as some of the individuals who made donations.


First Bank of Nigeria, Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC), Adron homes, Christ Apostolic Church, Nigeria Baptist Convention and Seven-Up bottling companies, according to him, are among the corporate donors.

Adisa said: “As of April 8, 2020, the funds in the three accounts domiciled in First Bank, UBA and Unity Bank stand at N200 million, while donations in food items and other materials worth close to N50 million have also been received.


“First Bank of Nigeria, ADRON Homes and Properties Ltd donated N20 million each; a former Governor of Oyo State, Senator Rashidi Ladoja and former governorship hopeful of the African Democratic Congress (ADC), who is now a chieftain of the PDP, Engr. Aderemi Oseni, donated N10 million each.

“One of the founding leaders of the PDP in the state, Alhaji Yekini Adeojo and the Christ Apostolic Church (CAC), donated N5 million each.


“Besides the cash donations, some groups, corporate entities and individuals have also made donations such as foodstuffs, drinks and other items worth millions to the state’s Food Security and Emergency Task Force.

“Some of the food products donated to the state include rice, beans, garri, yam and vegetable oil, among others


“Other items donated to the state government include hand sanitisers, medical items, knapsack sprayers and buckets.

“Details of the donations have been published on Oyo State website: http://www.oyostate.gov.ng as of April 8, 2020, noting that the Kola Daisi Foundation and Protogy Global Services donated N1 million each.


Other donations, according to Adisa, included those of the PDP candidate for the Ibadan North House Federal Constituency House of Representatives seat, Chief Ademola Omotoso, who donated N500,000; Seven-Up Bottling Company (N500,000) and Muraina Abdullahi (N500,000).

“Updates from the Food Security and Emergency COVID-19 Task Force, which is responsible for receiving food donations also show that different organisations and individuals including NPG Farms, Farm Connect Agribusiness Industry Ltd, Fan Milk PLC, Agro Park, Niji Farms, SUMAL Foods Ltd, Nigerian Baptist Convention and WEMA Bank donated different food items to the state.

“Other donations in food items and other materials came from: Ladoke Akintola University of Technology, Dr. Sola Adeduntan, a Director with First Bank Plc, Dr. Kola Adesina, Group CEO, Saharan Power, Lagos, CAPS Feed, Seven-Up Bottling Company, Poultry Association of Nigeria, Oyo State chapter, IBEDC and Glister Success Ltd.

“All donations were those updated on the official website of the state as of 8 April, and Governor Makinde is full of appreciations to the donors.”


#Newsworthy…

Nigeria – Lagos announce 7 more COVID-19 patients discharge.


Lagos State Government Coronavirus (Covid-19) Isolation Centre

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, has announced the discharge of seven more COVID-19 patients from the Infectious Disease Hospital in Yaba bringing the number of patients discharged in Lagos to 39.


Governor Sanwo-Olu made the announcement through his Twitter handle on Thursday.

He said, “Good people of Lagos, I bring you awesome news from IDH, Yaba, which is a testament to our resolve to overcome the lethal #COVID19 pandemic ravaging the world.


“Today, we discharged 7 more patients who have fully recovered and tested negative twice consecutively for #COVID19.

“This is in a bid to intensify our search for possible cases of #COVID19 in different communities across the State known as *Active Case Search*.


“These officials can be identified with a #COVID19 outbreak response tag or a letter from the LGA.

“I implore you to give them your maximum support by providing accurate information that would help in containing this #COVID19 pandemic quickly.

“Again, I assure you that at the end of it all, we will be victorious. Thank you”

The discharged patients include one female and six males; three of the male patients are foreign nationals; two Ukrainians and one Italian.


#Newsworthy…

Nigeria – Fire Gut Lagos Airport Hotel.


Information reaching NobleReporters has it that men of the Lagos Fire Service have put out a fire that was said to have emanated from the parking lot of the Lagos Airport Hotel in Ikeja Lagos.

According to Nosa Okunbor, the Public Affairs Officer of the Lagos State Emergency Management Agency, (LASEMA), the fire started from one of the cars in the parking longue of the hotel.


Fire scare at Lagos Airport Hotel
He said the prompt arrival of the fire service and the LASEMA response team saved the situation and stopped the fire from escalating.

It was not clear the extent of damage the fire caused to other cars and the entire facility before it was put out.

Lagos Airport Hotel, Ikeja, is a member of the Odu’a Group of Companies.


#Newsworthy…

Nigeria – Lagos govt disregard reports of lifting COVID-19 lockdown because of Easter celebration.


The Lagos state government has dismissed reports that the lockdown in the state due to the Coronavirus pandemic has been lifted for the Easter celebration this weekend.

At the press briefing today, the state Commissioner for Information, Gbenga Omotoso, said the lockdown is still in full force.


He said it is only the Federal government that can lift the lockdown order. Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu has not relaxed any lockdown.

The lockdown is still on and we appeal to Lagosians to continue to obey the directive to continue to be responsible because that is the only way the experts have said we can fight this disease.


The lockdown is still on. If it is going to be extended or relaxed, it is the business of the Federal government.

The announcement is not going to be made by Babajide Sanwo-Olu because he did not impose it in the first place”

he said President Buhari on March 29th, announced a lockdown on the state as part of measures to curb the spread of the ravaging Coronavirus.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Kwara to shut down totally from 6pm on Friday. (Nigeria)


The Kwara State Government, Thursday, announced a total lockdown of vehicular, movement of people and all businesses from 6pm Friday.

Deputy Governor of the state and chairman of the state technical committee on COVID-19, Mr Kayode Alabi, disclosed this while briefing newsmen in Ilorin, the state capital.


He said banks and food items will be allowed to open for business only on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays between the hours of 10 am and 2pm.

The deputy governor, who said everything was being put in place to prevent further spread of the pandemic disease in the state, urged residents to ensure they observed all rules guiding the prevention of the novel Coronavirus.


He warned against stigmatisation of persons suspected to have been infected with the disease, saying “the state government will prosecute any one caught in the act.”

Alabi also appealed to the families of those who had contact with the COVID-19 index case in the state to present themselves for test, assuring that the case at the isolation centre was stable and receiving adequate attention.


Kwara state technical committee on COVID-19 had Monday, confirmed two separate cases of the disease in the state.

One of the victims, according to a statement by the spokesman for the committee, Rafiu Ajakaye is the wife of the University of Ilorin teaching hospital, patient, a United kingdom returnee, who died last Thursday and another UK returnee.

The poor handling of the deceased case led to the indefinite suspension of the consultant, Professor A.K. Salami, who admitted, managed and released the corpse of the patient for burial at his home town in Offa under secrecy.

The development first led to the total lockdown of Offa communities now followed by the total shutdown of the whole state.


#Newsworthy…

Nigeria – Lagos begins door-to-door search for COVID-19 infected individual.


As the number of confirmed positive cases of the novel coronavirus rises in Lagos state, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Thursday said the State Government would commence a door-to-door search tagged: ‘Active Case Search’.

The governor, who disclosed this on his official Twitter handle @jidesanwoolu, stated that in the coming days, some health workers will be moving around in pairs to administer an electronic questionnaire at homes and healthcare facilities to make inquiries about some symptoms like cough, cold and fever.


This, he said, is a necessary bid to intensify the search for possible cases of COVID-19 in different communities across the State.

“These officials can be identified with a COVID-19 outbreak response tag or a letter from the LGA,” he said.


He implored residents to give the health officers their maximum support by providing accurate information that would help in containing the #COVID-19 pandemic quickly.

Meanwhile, the Governor also said that seven more patients have fully recovered and have been discharged from the Infectious Disease Hospital (IDH), Yaba on Thursday.


The patients, according to Governor Sanwo-Olu, include one female and six males. He said that three of the discharged male patients are foreign nationals; two Ukrainians and one Italian.

They were discharged having tested negative twice consecutively for COVID-19; bringing to 39 the number of discharged patients in Lagos, he said.

“As we look forward to more great news in the coming days, I implore you all to support our offensive against COVID-19 by complying with our directives and taking responsibility for yourselves and your community. Again, I assure you that at the end of it all, we will be victorious,” Sanwo-Olu assured.


#Newsworthy…

COVID-19: Pastor Kumuyi donate N50M to Nigerian Government.


Moved by the need to support the spirited efforts of all in fighting the Covid-19 pandemic in the country, one of the most popular churches in the world, Deeper Christian Life Ministry, has donated the sum of N50million to the Federal Government of Nigeria.

Our correspondent gathered that the donation was made recently by the church, as a way of lending support to the Private Sector Coalition Against Covid-19 (CA Covid-19).


In a statement signed by the General Superintendent of the church, Pastor Williams Kumuyi, the revered clergyman, however, noted that the donation was aimed at ameliorating the sufferings occasioned by the scourge.

“The deeper Christian Life Ministry is delighted at and challenged by the massive efforts of the Federal Government and her agencies in curtailing the spread of Covid-19 and bringing relief to sufferers.


“The introduction of the private sector coalition against Covid-19 (CA Covid-19) to harness resources in combatting this global health crisis is also highly commendable.

“We wish to identify with this noble initiative and consequently have made a donation of N50,000,000 (fifty million naira) into your Central Bank account, in support of your campaign.

“We have a firm belief in God that He will answer our prayers and bring an end to the pandemic, sooner than expected. May God bless all your efforts,” Kumuyi said.

Recall that, only recently, the church donated relief materials in food items worth several millions of naira to the Ogun and Lagos State governments, in support of the food bank initiative by the state, in the face of the lockdown.


#Newsworthy…

I almost die during my giveaway – Tonto dikeh reveal.


Tonto Dikeh took to Instagram to narrate how she was almost stabbed by a man during the giveaway her foundation organised to give people on the streets food.

Tonto Dikeh narrates how she was almost stabbed by a man during her giveaway


According to Tonto Dikeh, they were rough handled and during the process, a man who claimed he was deprived of food brought out a sharp object to stab her.

She added that some of her team members were also attacked and beaten, terming the level of hunger in Nigeria to be a dangerous one.

The mother of one however called on president Muhammadu Buhari to tell him Nigerians are hungry and the relief funds he provided is obviously not going round.


#Newsworthy…

Nigeria – Man set Ekiti Chief ablaze – says he snatch his wife.


The Ekiti State police has arrested a Tiv man identified simply as Sunday, after being linked to the death of 35-year-old Onibedo of Ilotin community of the state, Chief Sola Fatunla.

Before the incident, Sunday had apologized to the deceased for accusing him of snatching his wife Tadeni who he had two kids with before their marriage collapsed. The apology came after he found out that Fatunla and his wife were mere family friends.


But events took a tragic turn on Sunday when Fatunla followed the man to the bush.

Fatunla was killed last Sunday, while accompanying the suspect to where he claimed his charcoal was seized. Sunday had allegedly begged Fatunla to use his influence as a chief in Ikole Ekiti, to plead with some people he claimed had seized his charcoal in the bush.


He ran out of luck after his wife who he abducted alongside the Ekiti Chief, escaped while he and his acomplices allegedly took the deceased to a different location where he was beaten with cutlass and set ablaze.

A police source told Media;


“While the Chief was accompanying him to where his charcoal was seized, the Tiv man allegedly connived with others to abduct Chief Fatunla and Miss Tadeni somewhere around Iyemero Ekiti, in Ikole local government, Ekiti State.

“The Chief was strangled to death and his corpse set on fire. However, Miss Tadeni escaped from the abductors. Sunday and his other accomplices were caught by vigilante men in the Pategi area of Kwara State as they were escaping.

“When the vigilante men stopped Sunday and his accomplices and were questioning them as to their mission in the area, especially despite the lockdown, Chief Fatunla’s phone that Sunday kept in his pocket rang and he refused to answer the call. One of the vigilante men collected the phone and answered the call only to be told that the owner of the phone was abducted.

“The vigilante men then handed Sunday and the others to the police in Kwara State, who transferred them to the police in Ekiti State. Chief Fatunla’s remains had been recovered and deposited in the mortuary, while Sunday and the other suspects are being detained by the police in Ekiti State.”


#Newsworthy…

Nigerian government grant 2,600 inmates bail.


The Nigerian Federal Government has granted amnesty to no fewer than 2,600 prison inmates as part of measures to de-congest prison facilities during the COVID-19 pandemic.


President Buhari grants pardon


Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, announced this at a press conference which held at the headquarters of the Nigerian Correctional Service in Abuja today, April 9.

According to the Minister, those eligible for the pardon include inmates that are 60 years and above; those suffering from ill-health likely to result in death; convicts serving three years and above and have less than six months to serve; inmates with mental issues; and inmates with an option of fine not exceeding N50,000.


President Buhari grants pardon


Aregbesola said that out of the said number, 70 inmates will be released today from Kuje maximum custodial centre.

“In a symbolic gesture of the amnesty given to the 2,600 inmates across Nigeria, 41 Federal inmates and 29 FCT inmates making a total of 70 inmates who met the above criteria will be released today from the Kuje Custodial Centre in Abuja. This amnesty will not apply to inmates sentenced for violent extreme offences such as terrorism, kidnapping, armed banditry, rape, human trafficking, culpable homicide and so on.

The Governors of the 36 states under whose jurisdiction most of the inmates were incarcerated will complete the exercise in line with the federal principle.” he said


#Newsworthy…

Nigerians blast Burna Boy after saying Nigerians deserve calamity. [See Reactions]


Nigerians took to their social pages to slam African Giant – Burna Boy for saying they deserve any bad thing that happens to them as they do not hold their leaders accountable enough.

The Odogwu singer added that Nigerians should use the same energy they used in reporting Funke Akindele for holding a house party, to hold politicians accountable for their actions.


According to the popular opinions making the round on Twitter, Burna Boy is wrong for saying Nigerians, who drag their politicians every chance they get, don’t do that enough. According to Nigerians on Twitter, Burna Boy does not use his platform as much as he should for positive activism as they believe he should. His attitude of superiority, according to many stirred from being compared to the legendary Fela, who without the help of social media, criticized the government and public figures during his time.


#Newsworthy…

Petty businesses sue China for $8trn


A group of small businesses in the US have come together to sue China for 8 trillion dollars.

The small business group including Cardiff Prestige Property, Little Saigon Chamber of Commerce, First Premier X and others in California have filed a lawsuit against the People’s Republic of China, the City of Wuhan and that country’s Health Commission.


NobleReporters report, According to the document, obtained by media, the group claims the Chinese government knew as early as mid-November that they were dealing with a “new” and potentially deadly virus, but covered up the severity of the illness.

The lawsuit, which this coalition is aiming to make a class-action by inviting similarly affected businesses across the U.S. also alleges that it’s possible a bio-weapons lab near Wuhan could be responsible for the infected bat that ended up in a wet market ultimately starting the pandemic.


The suit claims China was well aware of the pandemic earlier than February, and should have given a heads up to the World Health Organization and neighboring nations, but failed to do so.

As a result, this group of businesses says China has cost entrepreneurs dearly and they are asking for a whopping $8 trillion in damages they say they and other small businesses have suffered due to government-ordered closures.

Since the virus broke out from China, over one million people have been infected with thousands of deaths recorded globally.

Chinese City, Wuhan, which is the center of the pandemic, recently lifted its ban after 72 days even as cases continue to spike up around the world.


#Newsworthy…

Nigerian govt reveals why it is impossible to test every Nigerian for COVID-19 now.


The Federal Government has said that conducting mass testing for Coronavirus in Nigeria would not be possible for now given that the nation has over 200 million population.

This was made known by the Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire, during a news briefing after the arrival of the Chinese experts in Abuja, on Wednesday.


Ehanire said that the government was more focused on conducting tests for those who had been abroad or those who may have come in contact with any positive case.

He said,


“We have 200 million citizens and mass testing is not something that I think is very feasible now, we are doing targeted testing.

“We are targeting those who are likely to have been affected, so we are looking at areas and persons who meet certain criteria that we set.


“Criteria of having been abroad, having been in contact with persons who have been abroad or having been in a cluster of places where we have a lot of positives.

“Even though it is going into secondary we are doing what is called smart testing in order to identify the cases that are giving us concern.”

According to him, researches were ongoing in many countries and the government was relying on science and advice from WHO to overcome the pandemic, NobleReporters reports.


#Newsworthy….

COVID-19: 91 quarantined as more returnees take land borders in Nigeria.


More Nigerians living in West African nations have started returning to the country through land borders following the rise in COVID-19 cases globally

The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, at a press conference organised by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja on Wednesday, said 67 persons had already arrived at the country’s land border.

The minister, who did not indicate the land border the returnees were, stated that 24 more would come today (Thursday).

The minister stated that both batches (91) of returnees would be isolated for 14 days and put under surveillance for possible COVID-19 symptoms before they could proceed to their different destinations in the country.

The Nigeria Immigration Service, in a statement later on Wednesday, confirmed that the 67 Nigerians had arrived at the Seme border in Lagos State.


Osun 58 indigenes top list of 67 returnees


The Comptroller General of the NIS, Muhammad Babandede, said the service officials received the 67 returnees and after thorough profiling, handed them over to the Lagos State Government.

In a statement by the NIS Public Relations Officer, Mr Sunday James, the comptroller general said 58 of the returnees were from Osun State

He said the NIS “handed them over to the Lagos State Government, represented by the Special Assistant Health to the Executive Governor of Lagos State, Dr Tunde Ajayi, after thorough profiling with the following details: Osun State, 58; Lagos State, four; Oyo State, two; Ondo State, one; Edo, one; Ogun-one, total 67 returnees.”

NobleReporters gathered that the Lagos State Government had accommodated the 67 returnees in some hotels in Badagry, where they would be quarantined for two weeks.

A source, who confided in one of our correspondents, said they would be joined by 24 people who would arrive on Thursday.

Last month, 127 Nigerians, mostly from Osun State, arrived in the country through the Idiroko border in Ogun State.

The state Governor, Dapo Abiodun, handed the returnees over to his Osun State counterpart, Gboyega Oyetola, who isolated them in Ejigbo. Eighteen of the returnees have tested positive for COVID-19.

NobleReporters, on Tuesday reported that 67 persons were stopped by security agents at the Seme border.

According to the report, the security agents notified the Lagos State Government, which insisted that returnees must be in quarantine for 14 days.

NobleReporters also reported that the Lagos State Government had made arrangements to accommodate the returnees in some Badagry hotels, which had no other guests.

At the PTF press conference on Wednesday, the minister of foreign affairs said the Federal Government contacted the governments of Togo and Benin, which allowed the 67 Nigerians to pass through their territories.

The minister said, “They are now at the Nigerian border and we got the authorisation for them to come into the country. They will be in isolation for the mandatory 14 days when they have come in.

“We have another 24 Nigerians in a hotel in Togo. They are going to be tested. We have also got the government of Benin’s approval for them to move through Béninoise territory to come into Nigeria, possibly by tomorrow.

“We’ve also arranged where they will all be confined when they come into the country. That has been going very smoothly and, for this, we are extremely grateful to the governments of Togo and the Republic of Benin, which have cooperated with us and made this possible.”

Onyeama added that there was a doctor who was part of the team “caught outside the country,” adding that the doctor had made his way to the Republic of Benin.


Why we put evacuation of Nigerians abroad on hold – FG


The minister further explained that with regard to evacuation of Nigerians abroad, the PTF had been deliberating on the issue since airports were shut.

He said, “The response is not as a result of letters that have been coming in from Nigerians in the Diaspora but something that was taken up by the task force from the beginning.

“But at that time, we did not have all our isolation centres and all the other arrangements in place. For that reason, we kept it in abeyance while we were putting all those things in place.

“Now that we have sufficient beds and so forth and the protocol is now well established, we now feel in a much stronger and better position to undertake this Herculean task of trying to see how we can bring Nigerians outside the country back in.”


200 Nigerians returning from US, others


He stated that almost 200 Nigerians, especially in the United States, had indicated willingness to return.

The minister stated, “The engagement of Nigerians should be with the embassies and high commissions and not with any other parallel agency, department of government or anything like that.

“It is with them that we are collating all the names and making all the arrangements.”


More community transmissions recorded


Also at the press conference, the National Coordinator of the PTF, Dr Sani Aliyu, said there were more recorded cases of community transmission of coronavirus and fewer imported ones.

He said all public and private health care institutions should look out for patients presenting unusual respiratory tract infections, especially those that “cannot be explained.”

Aliyu said such symptoms had become important indicators for testing for the coronavirus infection.

He explained that from a public health perspective, one of the most effective ways of cutting transmission was to keep away from others.

The coordinator said, “More of our cases are now community-linked. We now have fewer cases that are linked to travel abroad or contact with people who have been abroad. Our health care services need to look out for this alert.

“At the same time, I would like to encourage the public, those that have suspicion that they have symptoms related to coronavirus, not to be afraid but to seek testing and treatment.”

The Chairman of the PTF on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, said the task force did not ask Nigerians for their bank verification numbers.

He also warned that the coronavirus infection was real and not a hoax, a scam or a joke.

Mustapha said, “A lot of people have lost loved ones. There are some families whose loved ones are undergoing treatment.

“Let the spirit of our humanity guide our utterances and conduct. Coronavirus is not a joke, please take it seriously and listen to the government. Please stay safe and protect your loved ones. Nothing is more important.”

The Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, denied reports that members of the task force received a daily allowance of N500,000.


Private hospitals to get treatment licence


The Minister of State for Health, Dr Olorunnimbe Mamora, at the press conference, said government would license private hospitals with relevant capacity to treat COVID-19 patients.

He said this was necessary to improve the nation’s response to COVID-19 treatment.

He said, “We are not just relying on public health institutions. We have started the process of accreditation for private hospitals where we are able to establish that they have the facilities for prevention, control and necessary personnel.

“We are engaging Association of General and Private Medical Practitioners of Nigeria and the Guild of Medical Directors.”

Mamora advised those who tested positive for COVID-19 to report to designated treatment centres for safe isolation.

This, he said, was because the danger of the disease was that those who did not have any symptom could infect others.

The minister appealed to health facilities not to reject patients without giving them advice on what to do on laid down guidelines by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.

He stated, “Additionally, all health facilities are reminded that coronavirus is an extremely dangerous pathogen which spreads very easily. It is not advisable to accept a person suspected of such infection for treatment if the facility is not accredited.”

On the Oyo State Governor, Seyi Makinde’s claim of local remedies for the virus, Mamora said he was not aware of the claim.

He stated, “We do know that since this COVID-19 outbreak came, I have got a lot of telephone calls from various people laying claims to having some remedies.

“We have in the Ministry of Health, the Department of Traditional Complementary and Alternative Medicine. I referred those people to the department. In collaboration with the National Institute of Pharmaceutical Research and Development, a kind of assessment was done and there is a protocol for clinical trial.”

He said such claims must go through the protocol of clinical trial.

Mamora also advised Nigerians against giving false information on symptoms or their travel history to health workers.


We’ve trained 3, 808 health care workers – NCDC


The NCDC Director General, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, said the centre had trained thousands of health workers to handle cases. He also urged state governments to allow experts to announce results of cases in their states.

He said, “As of April 5, 2020, we have trained 3,808 health care workers in infection prevention and control. Fifty per cent of them work in the private sector because many Nigerians receive care from the private sector.

“As we responded to Lagos and Ogun states in the early days of the outbreak, we actually focus a lot on the private sector in addition to the health care facility where we are managing these patients.

“Another 22 per cent were in treatment centres and 27 per cent were other members of the health work force that work as part of the response teams. We have trained a total of 270 health care workers from each state on case management.


14 Chinese doctors, medical supplies arrive


A 14-member medical team from China arrived at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja, on a chattered Air Peace aircraft on Wednesday.

The medical personnel, who landed around 5:15pm, were received by the Chinese Ambassador to Nigeria, Dr Zhou Pingjian; Executive Director, China Civil Engineering Construction Corporation, Mr Jacques Liao; senior officials of the ministries of foreign affairs and health and others.

The personnel, who are experts in infectious diseases, respiratory illness, intensive care, cardiology, neurology, general surgery and anesthesiology, were all wearing face masks as they filed out of the aircraft. They will spend 30 days in the country.

While receiving the team, the Chinese envoy expressed confidence that Nigeria had the capacity to defeat the pandemic.

He said, “China will continue to prove itself as a good friend, partner and brother to Nigeria through concrete actions. This joint battle against the COVID-19 pandemic will surely strengthen trust and cooperation between China and Nigeria.”

The visit of the medical team had been mired in controversy with the Nigerian Medical Association and various groups opposing it.

But the CCECC, which facilitated the visit, said the Chinese doctors were coming to treat its staff. It added that they would be coming with their drugs, and equipment to carry out COVID-19 tests on the company’s workers in the country.

In a statement on Wednesday, Air Peace confirmed that one of its aircraft made a 14-hour direct flight to China to airlift the Federal Government’s medical supplies from China.

According to a statement by the management of the aircraft, this was the first time a Nigerian airline would be doing a direct non-stop 14 hour flight to China.

According to the airline, the medical supplies include 16-tons of test kits, ventilators, disinfectant machines, disposable medical masks, medicines, rubber gloves, protective gowns, goggles, face shields and infra-red thermometers among others.


Lagos records another COVID-19 death


The Lagos State on Wednesday said another COVID-19 patient had died in the state, bringing the number of coronavirus related deaths in the state to three.

The Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, on his twitter handle, @ProfAkinAbayomi, said, “Lagos recorded another COVID-19 related death; a 66-year-old Briton who travelled from India via Dubai to Lagos on March 17, 2020.”

The Kwara State Governor, Abdulrahman Abdulrazaq, on his part, said Muslim clerics who performed funeral rites on an accountant, Alhaji Muideen Obanimomo that died of COVID-19 at the University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital, had been isolated.

The state government had on Tuesday imposed lockdown on Offa, where the deceased was buried.


Ogun isolates families of two new cases


The Ogun state government said it had isolated families of two new cases of COVID-19 in the state.

The government said it was tracing all the contacts of the new cases.

The state Governor, Dapo Abiodun, had on Monday said a case each was recorded at Mowe in the Obafemi-Owode and the Yewa South Local Government areas of the state.

The Special Adviser to Governor on Public Communications, Remmy Hazzan, who spoke to one of our correspondents on Wednesday, said the government was tracing the contacts of the new cases.

Hazzan said the state government had isolated immediate families of the two new cases.


NCDC confirms 22 new cases


The NCDC on Wednesday confirmed 22 new infections. It put the total number of cases in Nigeria at 276. It, however, did not include the two cases announced by the Ogun State Government on Monday

The NCDC via its twitter handle, @NCDCgov, said, “Twenty-two new cases of COVID19 have been reported in Nigeria: 15 in Lagos, four in the FCT, two in Bauchi, one in Edo.

“As at 09:00pm 8th April there are 276 confirmed cases of #COVID19 reported in Nigeria. Forty-four have been discharged with six deaths.”


#Newsworthy…

FG tackles news of presidential taskforce member on COVID-19 receiving N500k on sitting.


The Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, has described as fake news, reports making the rounds on social media that members of the Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19 have been receiving N500, 000 daily as sitting allowance.

The Minister who spoke at a press briefing in Abuja on Wednesday, said he was shocked when he heard the rumor. He said members of the team have not received any allowance at all and that as a matter of fact, they have been the ones using their own money to carry out this National Assignment.


“The issue I want to take on is that of the sitting allowance of half a million naira, paid to each of the members of the task force. You will remember that each time I come here, since I tested negative for Coronavirus, my other major problem has been fake news. As soon as I got that information, I consulted with my colleagues here whether I’m not a member of the task force and I asked them whether they’d received their own and they said no.

What bothers me is that since about 2 O’clock this afternoon I’ve been receiving text messages to send money to people; that they were broke, they had no money and I began to wonder, why today? Apparently, they are acting on this fake news that we receive half a million naira everyday.

The truth of the matter is that no member of the committee has received one penny, either for sitting or sleeping allowance, not even when we went to Lagos yesterday. So, you see this fake news is targeted at one thing alone: to distract the government from the more serious problem and task of containing and combating fake news. I want to say loud and clear; no member of the committee receives a penny as sitting allowance. Everybody sacrificed his time, energy and even sometimes his resources”, Mohammed said


#Newsworthy…

FFK – While Buhari is busy accommodating Chinese, They are chasing Nigerians.


Femi Fani-Kayode took to his Twitter handle on Thursday morning April 9, to react to the news of the arrival of 15 Chinese doctors to Nigeria to help in the fight against the ravaging COVID-19.

He wrote


”Whilst Buhari is inviting the Chinese to Nigeria to “help fight Covid 19”, the Chinese Govt. is throwing Nigerians out of their homes, persecuting them, subjecting them to the most vile & despicable human rights abuses & mocking, insulting & humiliating them on a daily basis!’.’


#Newsworthy….

COVID-19: 22 new cases confirmed as cases in Nigeria jumps to 276.


The Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) has confirmed 22 new cases of the COVID-19 in Nigeria, bringing the total number of infections in the country to 276.

According to the NCDC, 15 are in Lagos, four are in the FCT, two are in Bauchi, while the other is in Edo.


A breakdown of the cases in each of the states shows that Lagos now has 145 cases, the FCT Abuja 54, Osun 20, Edo 12, Oyo 11, Bauchi eight, Akwa-Ibom and Kaduna five each, four in Ogun, two each in Enugu, Ekiti, Kwara and Rivers states, while Ondo, Benue, Katsina and Delta states have one case each.

Six deaths have also been recorded. Meanwhile, on a positive note, 44 cases have been discharged.

As the government scales up efforts to curb the spread of the disease in the country, some Chinese medical experts have been invited to complement such efforts.

The 15-man medical team from China arrived at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.

The team arrived in Nigeria on Wednesday in a chartered Air Peace aircraft and the Minister of Health, Dr. Osagie Ehainre was at the airport to receive them.

News that Chinese medical experts were coming into the country had split opinion, but the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 had last week, insisted that they would complement ongoing efforts to tackle the pandemic.


#Newsworthy..

Bruce Willis quarantines with Demi Moore, leaves wife and kids.


We all know Bruce Willis and Demi Moore stayed friends after their 12-year marriage ended, but this still seems like a bit much:

Willis is apparently quarantining with Moore and their three adult daughters, plus at least some of the partners of those daughters, per Page Six.


The huge crew has been posting pictures of themselves engaging in wacky self-isolation hijinks like wearing matching green striped pajamas, and N.Rs learnt that Tallulah Willis responded to one comment pointing out that the family didn’t appear to be socially distancing with: “Hi! We made the choice to quarantine together and have been together for 27 days taking every precaution. Please stay inside and wash your hands!”

Willis is now, of course, married to Emma Heming, and they have two daughters together, ages 8 and 5.


Heming has been commenting on many of the posts, including one comment the Mirror calls “cryptic” in which she wrote, “Family bonding at its finest, miss you guys,” inspiring many other commenters to presume she’s internally fuming over the situation.

But other comments, including one on a video of Willis shaving his daughter’s head, seem heartfelt: “This is actually melting my heart,” she wrote on that one, and on one of the matching PJ pics, she wrote, per People,

“Not many can pull that color off! Looking good squad.” If you have questions about why Willis is with his ex-wife and adult daughters rather than his current wife and young daughters, you’re not alone; the Guardian has a whole tongue-in-cheek “explainer” of the situation


#Newsworthy…

Nigeria – DELSUTH to rise again – CMD says.


The Delta State University Teaching Hospital (DELSUTH) at Oghara in Ethiope West Local Government Area is the state’s apex health institution providing basic training, research and medical services.

It was established to give skilled health care through the training of undergraduate medical students, residency training of doctors and paramedics.

But since June 10, 2010, when it was officially inaugurated by President Goodluck Jonathan, DELSUTH had been plagued by multifaceted problems, ranging from industrial unrest, low staff morale, brain drain, poor funding, massive infrastructure decay, and epileptic power supply.

But with ongoing renovation of the institution by the Governor Ifeanyi Okowa administration, there is hope the tertiary health care centre can reclaim some of its lost glory.

Dr Onome Ogueh, the chief medical director (CMD), believes the old narrative is gradually being replaced by a culture of medical excellence as envisioned by its founding fathers.

He says his priority, besides ensuring the hospital was run professionally, is to change the hearts and minds of “people who work here to have the right attitude towards the care that we provide.”

The CMD, appointed a little over three years ago, outlines his strategy for revamping the institution.

He says: “My management team has been doing a bit to reposition DELSUTH. We have approached this in various ways. One of the things we have done since I came on board just over three years ago is to make sure that all our departments are accredited for providing clinical services at a tertiary care level. For instance, for the first time we have full accreditation for Paediatrics, Radiology and Radiography, Orthopaedic, Cardiology, Neurology, etc.”

Continuing, he says “we have also ensured that we employ adequate staff for proper service delivery. We now have, for instance, a consultant dermatologist for the first time in DELSUTH. We have also employed a cardio-thoracic surgeon. We did not have one in Delta State before now. So, we are beginning to develop a cardio-thoracic surgery service. We have also employed a restorative dentist for the first time in Delta State. We are now developing a restorative dentistry service.”

He admits that for DELSUTH to play its multifarious role effectively, it requires annual subventions from government.

But Ogueh says his team is “already looking outward”. According to him, the management is exploring other avenues to generate revenue, such as “engaging in the production of medical consumables, sanitisers to hospitals, etc.”

His words: “Like all government hospitals and teaching hospitals in the world, DELSUTH requires subvention because unlike ordinary hospitals, we do not just deliver clinical services. We do more than that. As a teaching hospital, one of the pillars of the things we do is to provide research that will help to improve the quality of the services we give to the people. We also provide training for medical students, training for postgraduate doctors, and to be able to train medical students and postgraduate doctors, we need all departments to be accredited and this requires proper funding.

“We also need to train postgraduate doctors so we can have specialists that can provide specialist services in the state and in the country, and to train these people require funding. These are things you cannot achieve with internally- generated revenue. So, I must say we need to have more.”

One of the strategies includes approaching wealthy Deltans and corporate bodies to contribute towards development of the hospital.

The CMD notes that the move has yielded astounding results. “For instance, I can tell you that one of the new services we brought in is an optic laboratory. That service was funded entirely by an individual from this community. That service has been running for few years.”

He says other revenue sources being explored include leveraging on the hospital’s competencies, such as specialisation in nursing by providing services for students from other universities, including Ladoke Akintola University of Technology at Ogbomosho in Oyo State.

Dr. Ogueh says because his team emphasises medical research, internationally-recognised researchers from DELSUTH are currently engaged in research into specialised fields.

His words: “We are doing quite a lot in terms of research. Because we are a teaching hospital, we have professors, senior lecturers, and lecturers, whose pact of agreement is to carry out research, and some of the research involves international collaboration.

”For instance, we have a programme that we have been running with UT South-Western, U.S.A, where we are collaborating to do research into kidney disease. We have different types of research going on. We are in the process of setting up a telecardiology research where we can begin to view people with heart conditions or research into heart conditions by telemedicine. You are sitting here in Oghara and you are able to do some kind of consultation in Lagos or elsewhere. That is one area we are doing research collaboration. We are doing research in many other areas because that is what makes us different from the general hospital. We do research into the services that we are providing to ensure that we provide the best for patients.”

He says DELSUTH possesses a fully equipped Radiology Department, and an MRI machine (which is of the highest standard), adding that the institution provides training for resident doctors from the University of Benin Teaching Hospital and University of Calabar Teaching Hospital.

The CMD notes that the tertiary health care institution is breaking grounds in the area of a paediatric cardio-thoracic surgery unit.

He says paediatric cardio-thoracic surgery is not done in Nigeria, adding that the vision of the institution is to run the service on a regular basis.

“One of such is the setting up of a Paediatric Cardio-thoracic surgery service in DELSUTH. The governor has already approved funding for it because as we speak the only way one can get paediatric cardio-thoracic surgery is to go to America, UK, Israel or India, or when people from those countries come to do outreach programmes here. That is the only time one can have it. What we want to do is a regular service and we are in the process of setting that up in collaboration with Hospital for Humanity based in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.A.”

But Ogueh thinks his most astounding success is the cordial relationship blossoming with the host community and trade unions in the institution.

He says prompt payment of salaries and other emoluments by the government have lifted the morale of workers, adding that regular medical outreaches and support for local festivals have closed the gap in the relationship with the host community.

“We have bridged that gap and that is why, for instance, we have a football tournament that involves the community. We also reach out to the people during festive periods. During their traditional festival, Christmas, etc. we always give our support. We have bridged the gap that there was,” he offers.

Despite lamenting the deleterious effects of brain drain on the institution, Ogueh believes the country’s medical community stands to benefit in the long run.

According to him, “the other take I have with the brain drain issue is that sometimes, maybe it is even good for our people to go out there because when they go out there, they get more exposure because of the infrastructure they will meet there, which will improve their knowledge and experience. Some of them will bring this knowledge and experience back to Nigeria and use that to help develop the health service.

Continuing, he says: “… you are looking at a man who spent 28 years in the UK, Canada and America before coming back to Nigeria. The knowledge and experience I picked up in my sojourn is helping me to manage this place in the way I have been doing. For example, in the UK, because I was interested in management, I went through leadership training that has prepared me in leading this institution. Part of that leadership training involved my coming to Nigeria 10 years ago to do some work and help set up this hospital.”

Before his appointment, he was a Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist and Associate Medical Director with Brighton and Sussex University Hospital in the United Kingdom.

He also served as an Honorary Clinical Senior Lecturer with Brighton and Sussex Medical School in Brighton, United Kingdom.


How DELSUTH is preparing to battle COVID-19


Delta State University Teaching Hospital (DELSUTH) at Oghara in Ethiope Local Government Area has put measures in place to battle the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Chief Medical Director (CMD), Dr. Onome Ogueh, says the management, with support from the government, has constant supply of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE); face masks, gloves, hand sanitisers, etc. ”which we have consistently made available for use by our staff during this period.”

He adds: ”DELSUTH has a designated Isolation/Treatment Centre for COVID-19 with a screening protocol that is followed strictly with triage centres established at all clinics/ward entrances as well as the main hospital gate. This is to ensure that suspected cases are identified while making sure some form of clinical services delivery continues within the hospital”.

Dr. Ogueh notes that Governor Ifeanyi Okowa has been very proactive in preparing for COVID-19, saying the hospital has benefited through staff training, procurement of equipment and facilities’ upgrade.

He informs that ”management is aware that the state government is planning remuneration for all staff involved in the COVID-19 response team.”

The CMD says at this critical period, management counts on workers to give their total support in battling this pandemic.

Delta recorded its first case as of 9:45 pm last night. But the state had never relaxed its resolve to stop the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic despite not having had an index case until on Wednesday.


#Newsworthy…