Palpable panic has pervaded the length and breadth of Nigeria in less than 12 hours after the Nigerian government released a terse warning that the resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic might be imminent in the country. It has therefore directed that all treatment and isolation centers be prepared for possible reopening soon. This is due to the recent spike of COVID-19 cases in the country. The current status of COVID-19 cases in the country is 1,184 infected persons. Government fears that this may escalate into a second lockdown which would further burden the economy of the country.
For the first time in recent weeks, a good percentage of fear-stricken workers, pedestrians and commuters have been seen with facemasks and hand gloves as they go about their plans and programmes for the weekend.
Lately, COVID-19 has caused the demise of many prominent Nigerian like Chief Harrry Akande, a billionaire business mogul and politician. He was also a Presidential aspirant under the banner of defunct All Nigeria Peoples Party (ANPP). The pandemic has also led to the death of the General Officer Commanding, Port Harcourt, Rivers State, Major General John Irefin and has stalled the ongoing Chief of Army Staff’s annual conference 2020 after the GOC died in Abuja, on Tuesday. From this situation, LT. General Tukur Buratai, Chief of Army Staff, Bashir Magashi, Minister of Defence, and a host of other top military brass will all be going into isolation as they were all part of the strategic conference. This was confirmed by Brigadier General Sigir Musa, the acting Director, Army Public Relations who declared that all other participants of the annual conference will proceed into isolation in accordance with the FG’s COVID-19 protocols.
Last Thursday, Dr Osagie Ehanire, the Hounourable Minister of Health, told the media at the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 briefing in Abuja that healthcare workers must therefore be placed on red alert to tackle the expected surge of virus headlong.
Dr Ehanire noted that ‘this rightly suggests that we may just be on the verge of a second wave of this pandemic. Last week, we recorded 1843 against 1,235 two weeks before that and 1,126 the week before that.’
Ehanire added that ‘within 24 hours, 474 new confirmed cases and 2 deaths were recorded, with an indication that this week’s figure will beat last weeks.
‘As of today, we have crossed 70,000 mark with a total of 70,669 confirmed cases of which 65,242 have been treated and discharged.
‘Sadly, the number of deaths has now reached 1184 as against 1,167 two weeks before.
‘To prepare ourselves, I have directed that all Isolation and Treatment Centres, which were hitherto closed due to reduced patient load, to be prepared for reopening and the staff complement put on alert.’
Dr Ehanire also pleaded with Nigerians to obey the COVID-19 rules. He urged that Nigerians should play their part in making sure that there is no ‘explosive spread’ of the pandemic in the country just like what is happening currently in Europe and America.
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