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JUST IN: Nigeria records highest COVID-19 cases, deaths in West Africa

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Nigeria has the highest number of coronavirus cases and deaths in West Africa, The PUNCH reports.

With 2,388 confirmed infections and 85 fatalities, Nigeria also has the third-highest number of confirmed cases in Africa.

South Africa has the highest number of COVID-19 cases in Africa with 6,336 infections while Algeria has the second-highest cases with 4,295 infections.

According to data released by the World Health Organisation, as of 11 am on Sunday, no fewer than 11,503 confirmed COVID-19 cases, 280 deaths, and 3,480 recoveries have been recorded in West Africa.

Ghana has the second-highest number of COVID-19 infections with 2,169 cases, 18 deaths, and 229 recoveries.

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With 1,586 confirmed COVID-19 cases, seven deaths, and 405 recoveries, Guinea has the third-highest number of infections in West Africa.

A further breakdown of the data showed that Benin has recorded a total of 90 COVID-19 cases, two deaths, and 42 recoveries.

In Burkina Faso, 652 cases, 44 deaths, and 535 recoveries have been reported.

Cape Verde also recorded 152 confirmed COVID-19 cases, Ivory Coast, 1,362; Senegal, 1,115; Gambia, 17; Guinea-Bissau, 260; Liberia, 154; Mali, 544; Niger, 736; Sierra Leone, 155; and Togo, 123.

On death, Cape Verde has recorded two fatalities, Ivory Coast, 15; Senegal, nine; Gambia, one; Guinea-Bissau, one; Liberia, 18; Mali, 26; Niger, 35; Sierra Leone, eight; and Togo, nine.

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Meanwhile, Cape Verde has recorded 18 recoveries, Ivory Coast, 622; Senegal, 368; Gambia, nine; Guinea-Bissau, 19; Liberia, 48; Mali, 206; Niger, 507; Sierra Leone, 21; and Togo, 66.

The data also showed that Africa has recorded a total of 42, 381 confirmed cases, and 1, 749 deaths.

Giving an update on COVID-19 cases in Nigeria, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control said, “On the 2nd of May 2020, 220 new confirmed cases and 17 deaths were recorded in Nigeria.

“No new state has reported a case in the last 24 hours.

“Till date, 2,388 cases have been confirmed, 385 cases have been discharged and 85 deaths have been recorded in 34 states and the Federal Capital Territory.

“The 220 new cases are reported from 19 states – Lagos(62), FCT(52), Kaduna(31), Sokoto(13), Kebbi(10), Yobe (nine), Borno (six), Edo (five), Bauchi (five), Gombe (four), Enugu (four), Oyo (four), Zamfara (three), Nasarawa (two), Osun (two), Ebonyi (two), Kwara (two), Kano (two), Plateau (two).

“Thirty-four cases were discharged in the last 24 hours in four states – Lagos (22), Kano (seven), Osun (four), and Ogun (one).

“Seventeen deaths were recorded in the last 24 hours in seven states – Borno (five), Katsina (four), Kano (three), Lagos (two), Ogun (one), Sokoto (one) and Yobe (one).”

 

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COVID-19: Demand for oxygen by patients has increased- Lagos commissioner

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The Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof Akin Abayomi, has said that there is an increase in the demand for oxygen by COVID-19 patients.

As a result of this, he said the state government has intensified efforts to make oxygen available across the local government areas in the state.

Abayomi stated this on Friday at a Zoom webinar by the Lagos Civil Society against COVID-19. The webinar was themed, ‘COVID-19 Home/Community Based Care in Lagos: Issues and Opportunities.’

It was moderated by the Chairman, International Institute of Risk and Society Management Nigeria, Dr Eugene Itua.

Speaking during the session, Abayomi stated,

“We noticed that there is a slight increase in the demand for oxygen. Patients are coming in with breathlessness and sometimes they present (themselves) to other hospitals in need of oxygen.

“So, we are trying to make oxygen available across the local government areas so patients can get oxygen treatment to be stabilised. Once they are stable, they can now be moved into isolation centres and get more medical treatment and hopefully, we can rescue them from getting into a more critical stage where we may now need to consider ventilating.

“We’d rather not ventilate. There are about five levels of oxygen therapy before we get to the ventilation stage and if we can use those levels and avoid ventilating patients, we’ll rather go down that route. But that depends on getting the patient early enough.”

Abayomi said it was important for people in communities to go for testing early if they noticed COVID-19 symptoms so their conditions wouldn’t escalate to the critical stage.

“If they are feeling unwell, they should not automatically think it is malaria or typhoid or anything else. If they are feeling unwell and there is a fever, body pains, cough and signs of breathlessness or exhaustion, then it’s important to get tested for COVID-19 and assess their respiratory function so they can be admitted to an isolation centre early enough to prevent getting into a severe or critical state,” he said.

Furthermore, Abayomi said the state was now testing about 1,000 people a day and hoped to attain 4,000 tests per day.

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Due to the increasing number of patients (10,823 cases as of Thursday, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control), the health commissioner said the state would soon exceed its isolation capacity, hence the adoption of home-based care.

He said,

“This (home care) is not new. It is recommended by the World Health Organisation. Home isolation is a normal progression of an outbreak and we have reached that stage in Lagos.

“For the patients receiving home care, we will send them a package which contains the basic items we give patients at the isolation centres. The kit includes a mask, hand sanitiser, thermometer and some drugs. So, we are evolving into home-based care and we’ll be reserving our centres for more complicated cases.”

Meanwhile, the webinar’s moderator and IIRSMN Chairman, Itua, said civil society organisations had a major role to play regarding home-based care for COVID-19 patients. He said they must support the various stakeholders and communities on how to manage the pandemic.

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Covid-19: Ortom’s wife, son, aides test positive

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Covid-19: Ortom’s wife, son, aides test positive

The wife of the Governor of Benue State, Mrs Eunice Ortom, her son, and some of her aides have tested positive for Covid-19.

Mrs Ortom disclosed this in a statement she personally signed around 11:30 pm on Friday.

“Few moments ago this evening, I received my result from the tests earlier carried out on me by NCDC personnel on routine screening at Government House, Makurdi which returned that I and my son, and some staff are Covid-19 positive.

“We have from this moment, gone into total isolation as required by the protocols and would immediately begin the management treatment as advised by medical experts.

“While I have taken the responsibility to personally call everyone I can recall to have had recent contact with to go for testing, I advise anyone who has had close contact with me in the last 2 weeks and the public to go for screening and testing.

“I wish to reiterate that being Covid-19 positive is not a death sentence as evident by the many recoveries recorded thus far. So there is no need to panic, but we should continue to be responsible in our actions so as to keep others safe,” she said.

The governor’s wife, therefore, encouraged people to take preventive measures and be safe by observing the primary protocols such as wearing of masks, constant washing of hands, maintaining social distancing and staying indoors if not necessary to go out.

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The Chief Press Secretary to the governor, Terver Akase, had last Tuesday confirmed that his principal, Governor Samuel Ortom, had taken a second Covid-19 test and that the result was being awaited.

It is not immediately clear if Orton’s result had been released and what the test result read.

Since the relaxed lockdown in the state, the coronavirus infection rate has increased and there are palpable fear that if something is not done, it will go out of hand.

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Only recently, the Vice-Chancellor of the Benue State University tested positive to the virus.

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Atiku reacts as Wike, Fintiri gets new appointment

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Former Vice President, Alhaji Atiku Abubakar, has reacted to Governor Nyesome Wike’s new appointment as the Chairman of Edo State Governorship Election National Campaign Council.

Recall that the Peoples Democratic Party, PDP had appointed Governor Nyesome Wike as the Chairman of the Edo State Governorship Election National Campaign Council.

The party in a tweet via its official Twitter account also said it appointed Governor Ahmadu Fintiri as the Deputy Chairman of the election campaign.

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Reacting, the Former Vice President in a tweet via his official Twitter account on Saturday morning expressed his good wishes to the two candidates stating that he was confident that they would carry out their responsibilities well

He said

“Congratulations, Governor Wike on your appointment as Chairman of Edo State Governorship Election National Campaign Council of our great party, OfficialPDPNig.

“I am confident that your leadership, supported by Governor Ahmadu Fintiri, the Vice-Chairman, and other members of the PDP Edo 2020 Council will work assiduously for the victory of Governor Obaseki, and set Edo State on the path of even greater development.”

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