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Coronavirus

Nigeria’s COVID-19 curve is flattening at a rapid pace.

Yesterday, the NCDC announced that 138 new cases of Covid-19 were confirmed in Nigeria, the lowest daily number recorded since April 27th.

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The COVID-19 pandemic curve is rapidly flattening at an incredibly fast pace in the last few days. This follows several measures implemented by the government such as wearing a face mask, social distancing, and lockdown procedures, which are slowing down the spread of the pandemic in the country.

The latest data from the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) announced on Sunday reveals 138 new cases of Covid-19 was confirmed in Nigeria, which is the lowest daily number recorded since April 27th. It was 250 the day before and 160 on Friday. In total Nigeria has a total tally of 53,865.

A look at the time series shows that the curve started bending consistently in August after enduring three months of significant increases since May which dragged till the later part of the month of August. Month to date August has registered a daily average of just 357 one of the lowest and just lower than 150 days (between April 1 and August 29 2020) average of 359 cases.

Covid-19 News Case Counts chart.

The Demographics

The latest COVID-19 situation report shows that over 34,199 (64%) of the recorded cases were male while 19,528 (36%) females have been affected so far. Also, the most affected age group is between 31 and 40 years of age. Only 1% of the recorded cases have travel history, 24% got infected through contact with infected persons while 75% got infected through unknown exposure.

So far, 41,513 patients have been discharged since the pandemic, indicating a recovery rate of 77.1%, 11,339 patients remain under observation while 1,013 (1.88%) deaths have been recorded.

A stitch in time saves nine

It appears that the policies of the government are working as health experts have often cited wearing facemasks and limited movements as one of the most effective ways of containing the spread of the virus. Recall that the President, Muhammadu Buhari directed the cessation of all movement in Lagos and the Federal Capital (Abuja) for an initial period of 14 days, which took effect from March 30th, 2020, and later extended by an additional two-weeks period.

While Nigerians were restricted to the four walls of their homes, mandatory use of face masks and adoption of social distancing was strictly enforced in the country during this period with many organisations switching to remote working.

Furthermore, on April 27th, 2020, the President partially put on hold the movement restriction with only a few businesses allowed to commence operations from May 4th. It came along with the phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos, and Ogun States, which took effect from Saturday, 2nd May 2020.

Alongside the measures that have been taken by the federal and various state governments, most organisations also carried out a number of sensitization programmes to enlighten the public about the symptoms of the disease and how it can be prevented. A move, which is reflective of the new trend in the number of confirmed cases in the country.

But while it appears the curve is flattening, there are also reports of underreported cases. A recent research suggests some people have fallen ill with symptoms of Covid-19 but did not bother to go for testing.

Why this matters: The steady decline in the number of confirmed cases recorded in Nigeria suggests the government’s policy on facemasks, lockdowns, and curfews appear to have contained the spread of the virus. This matters immensely for the economy especially as the government reopens the airspace for international flight operations and businesses consider resuming full operations.

Also, the quicker the curve flattens, the more optimistic it is for the economy to recover faster than expected. The Nigerian economy contracted by 6.1% in the second quarter of the year as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic and halt in most aspects of the economy. Resuming full economic activities might not help the country avoid a recession but could quicken the recovery process.

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Coronavirus

FG denies banning passengers without proof of Covid-19 vaccination

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The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) has denied media reports alleging that the Federal Government through the agency has issued a directive banning travellers without proof of Covid-19 vaccination from travelling both local and international flights.

The aviation sector regulator said there was no iota of truth about such action which was allegedly supposed to take effect from December 1, 2021, and asked the general public to discountenance such news.

According to the News Agency of Nigeria, this disclosure is contained in a statement issued by the General Manager Public Relations of NCAA, Mr Sam Adurogboye, on Thursday in Lagos, saying that no such directive emanated from the agency.

What the Spokesman of NCAA is saying in the statement

Adurogboye said, “We want to state categorically that no such directive emanated from the government through NCAA. Therefore, the Authority is calling on the public to discountenance such news as there is no iota of truth in it.

“On the other hand, we want to enjoin purveyors of such unfounded news to cross-check facts before publishing.’’

The general manager expressed NCAA’s continuous support for all government initiatives to curb the spread of the Delta variant.

He added, “However, we expect strict adherence to safety protocols in and out of the airports by wearing our facemask, washing our hands periodically, using alcohol-based hand sanitiser, maintaining social distance and avoiding crowded space.’’

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Coronavirus

Nigeria records 253 covid-related deaths in September 2021, toll hits 2,721

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) announced 19 new covid-19 related deaths across the country on 30th September 2021, taking the total deaths recorded in September to 253, and a total death toll from inception-to-date to 2,721.

This is according to daily data tracked from the website of the NCDC.

Also, a total of 8,638 new cases was registered by the agency in the month of September. The number of cases recorded in the review month represents a 53.4% reduction compared to 18,523 recorded in the previous month (August 2021). It is however, 39.5% higher than 6,190 recorded in July 2021.

The number of deaths recorded in the month is 20.9% lower than 320 recorded in the previous month, while it jumped by 772.4% compared to 29 recorded in the month of July 2021.

The number of deaths recorded in the month is 20.9% lower than 320 recorded in the previous month, while it jumped by 772.4% compared to 29 recorded in the month of July 2021.

Key highlights

  • A total of 14,631 patients were discharged in the review period, 6.5% higher than 13,744 patients recorded in the previous month.
  • The number of active cases as of the time of writing this article stood at 9,427, which is lower than 11,203 admitted patients as of the beginning of the month.
  • Nigeria has recorded 111,589 new cases of the pandemic year-to-date, and 1,430 deaths in the same period.
  • It is worth noting that a total of 3.04 million tests have been carried out in Nigeria from inception to date.
  • Nigeria ranks 9th in Africa, for countries with highest number of cases, behind the likes of Zambia (209,046), Kenya (249,434), and Egypt (304,524), while South Africa stands in top with 2.9 million cases.

In terms of states with highest cases to date, Lagos State tops the list with 76,734 cases followed by the federal capital territory with 21,999, River State (12,160), Kaduna (9,646), and Plateau State with 9,401.

In the same vein, Lagos State has also recorded the highest number of deaths with 664, solely accounting for 24% of the total covid-related deaths recorded in the country.

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Coronavirus

Tokyo reports 4,058 COVID-19 cases, the highest since the start of the Olympics

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Newly reported COVID-19 cases in Olympic host city, Tokyo surged to a record high of 4,058 on Saturday, exceeding the 4,000-mark for the first time and overshadowing the Summer Games. The city has recorded a spike in cases since the Olympics games began.

For four days in a row during the week, Tokyo has been setting new record numbers for covid-19 cases although the Prime Minister has maintained that there are no links between these record-high number of cases and the Olympic games.

“Since we have imposed virus-curbing measures, such as cutting the flow of people (in public) and stricter border controls to prevent the spread of the virus by foreign visitors, I think there is none,” Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga said.

On Saturday, July 31, nationwide cases totalled 12,341, Japan’s highest and a figure up by15% on the day, signalling a rapid rise in infections across the country. This comes a day after Japan decided to extend states of emergency to three districts near Tokyo and the western district of Osaka to the end of August in light of the recent spike in infections.

Tokyo Olympics organisers said on Saturday that the accreditation of games-related individuals to leave the athletes’ village for activities not related to the games like sightseeing, has been revoked. The revocation means that a person cannot enter any Olympic facility without accreditation.

The government has repeatedly urged citizens to stay at home and watch the Olympic Games on TV. In addition, an appeal has been made to younger people to get vaccinated against the virus, as most Japanese aged above 65 have already been inoculated.

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