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Yahaya Bello’s comment on HIV/AIDS is a stigmatization – NEPWHAN


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The Network of People living with HIV/AIDS in Nigeria (NEPWHAN), says Kogi’s Gov. Yahaya Bello’s comment on HIV/AIDS is a complete violation of the anti-stigmatisation and discrimination law of 2014.

Mr Abdulkadir Ibrahim, National Coordinator of NEPWHAN, who spoke on behalf of members, said HIV/AIDS was not more deadly than Coronavirus (COVID-19), as presented by Bello.

Ibrahim was reacting to the governor’s comments while debunking the rumour that he was COVID-19 positive, in a short video clip that went viral.

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The NEPWHAN helmsman in an interview on Saturday in Abuja said that Bello had said anyone wishing that he contracted the disease would be infected with HIV/AIDS.

He urged the governor to immediately apologise to persons living with HIV or legal action would be instituted against him.

“How can a governor make such a stigmatising comment, as if HIV is a death sentence, or as if it is more deadly than COVID-19.

“One can embrace a HIV positive person, as well as shake their hands, but one cannot do the same to a COVID-19 patient, proving the deadly nature of the disease,” Ibrahim said.

According to him, research has proven that HIV patients could live normal lives without transmitting HIV to others, a system called; Undetectable equals Untransmissible (U=U).

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He, therefore, called for collective condemnation of such discriminatory remarks.

Ibrahim urged the National AIDS Control Authority (NACA), to step-up enlightenment on the challenges and nature of people living with HIV/AIDS, in order to correct negative impressions that could be created by such comments.



Covid-19: Libya reports 12 new cases, toll now 168



Covid-19: Libya reports 12 new cases, toll now 168

The National Centre for Disease Control of Libya has reported 12 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the caseload in the country to 168, with 52 recoveries and five deaths.

In a statement late Monday, the centre said it received a total of 658 suspected cases, 646 of whom tested negative and 12 positives.

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All the new infections are in southern Libya, the centre said.

The southern city of Sabha recorded nearly half of the total number of COVID-19 cases in the North African country in less than a week after the announcement of the first case in the city.

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The UN-backed government in the capital Tripoli recently decided to ban the entry into and exit from Sabha and imposed a 24-hour curfew for seven days starting from May 28, in order to fight the pandemic.

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The Libyan authorities have taken a series of protective measures against the virus, including closing the country’s borders, mosques and schools, banning public gatherings and imposing curfews.






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Reopening of churches: We await further details, says CAN



Coronavirus: Catholic church in Lagos suspends sprinkling of water, handshakes at mass over virus

The Special Assistant on Media and Communication to the Christian Association of Nigeria [CAN] President, Adebayo Oladeji, said the association was awaiting further details on the reopening of churches.

This comes as the Federal Government relaxes restrictions on churches and mosques as coronavirus[COVID-19] pandemic rages.

Oladeji said the Church is ready for the reopening and willing to follow the NCDC guidelines.

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He said,

“We want to get the details before we will react fully. But in the interim, it is a welcome development. It is our prayer that God will surely deliver Nigeria from the pandemic in Jesus Name.

“If Christians and Muslims return to their worship places to pray for victory over COVID-19, God will surely answer us. The closure of the worship places is not acceptable to God. We thank God for opening the eyes of our government to the reality.

“The Church is ready for the reopening and willing to follow the NCDC guidelines and while waiting for them. We have already directed all churches to keep to the hygienic regulations whenever they meet and to pray for the victory over COVID-19. The new development is as a result of our meeting with the religious leaders.”

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Nigeria Update

COVID-19: Final year students may write exams in July; bars, clubs and gym remain closed



The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 on Monday said final year students in its tertiary institutions may write their examination in July as the Federal Government begins the second phase of the gradual easing of restrictions placed on Nigerians over the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Chairman of the task force and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha, who disclosed this at the PTF press briefing in Abuja, said the reopening of churches and mosques would be based on guidelines issued by the task force and protocols agreed on by states.

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But the Coordinator of the PTF, Dr Sani Aliyu, noted that while markets would be opened and artisans could run their business, street hawking was prohibited.

Schools remain closed, final year students to prepare for exams

He added,

“All schools to remain closed until further evaluation. The Federal Ministry of Education is instructed to work with schools to start the process of preparing students that require exiting exams, to allow them to take exams early in the next phase of the lifting of the lockdown. But for the moment, schools are to remain closed.

“I have already mentioned places of worship. Restricted opening will apply subject to the guidelines issued by the PTF as well as the protocols agreed by respective state governments, working with religious leaders.

“Recreational parks and communal sports to remain closed until further evaluation.

He said for funerals, the task force was limiting the crowd to 20 people including family, with physical distancing adhered to, as well as hand washing.

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