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Nigeria records 438 new COVID-19 cases, total nears 40,000

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COVID-19: NCDC announces two more molecular laboratories

Nigeria on Saturday recorded 438 new cases of coronavirus with the total confirmed cases now 39,977.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) in a post early Sunday said the new cases were recorded in 23 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

“438 new cases of #COVID19Nigeria; Lagos-123 Kaduna-50 Rivers-40 Edo-37 Adamawa-25 Oyo-20 Nasarawa-16 Osun-15 Enugu-15 FCT-14 Ekiti-13 Ondo-13 Ebonyi-11 Katsina-10 Abia-9 Delta-8 Kwara-4 Ogun-3 Cross River-3 Kano-3 Bauchi-3 Yobe-2 Sokoto-1 Niger-1,” the agency wrote in a post on Twitter.

According to the health agency, less than half of the total COVID-19 cases (16,948) have been treated and discharged while 856 deaths have been recorded.

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Over a third of the total cases (14,300) were recorded in Lagos, the country’s commercial capital. The closest place after Lagos, the FCT, has 3,451 cases.

Nigeria has continued to record hundreds of new COVID-19 cases daily although the country is increasingly opening its economy.

Banks, markets and most businesses have been opened (although not for full operations in many cases) while airports have also been opened for local flights.

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International flights are, however, yet to resume and no date has been fixed for them. Schools are also yet to be allowed to open across the country.

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Mali protests resume as thousands call for president’s resignation

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Thousands of people took to the streets of Mali’s rainy capital Bamako on Tuesday renewing calls for President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita to step down despite international mediation efforts to resolve a political crisis.

Protests led by an opposition coalition called M5-RFP have raged since June, caused by contested local elections and perceived government corruption and incompetence.

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Tensions escalated in July when police shot dead at least 11 demonstrators.

Regional powers are worried that prolonged unrest could derail the fight against Islamist extremists in the region, many of whom are centred in Mali. Their presence has rendered large areas of the centre and north of Mali ungovernable.

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Keita had hoped that concessions to opponents and recommendations from a mediating delegation of regional leaders would help stem the tide of disaffection.

But the majority of protestors appeared unmoved as they filed into Bamako’s heaving Independence Square in their thousands on Tuesday, shouting “Keita step down” and “listen to your people”.

“M5-Rfp demands purely and simply the resignation of Ibrahim Boubacar Keita and his regime to allow for a democratic transition,” prominent M5-RFP member Ibrahim Maiga told the cheering crowd.

Reuters

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Nigeria pardons terrorists, wants to kill man for blasphemy – Apostle Suleman

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President of Omega Fire Ministries Worldwide Apostle Johnson Suleman has reacted to the death sentence handed down to a 22-year-old man by a Kano Upper Shari’a Court on Monday for blaspheming Prophet Muhammad.

Suleman via his Twitter page on Tuesday said Saudi Arabia will be shocked at the development.

He stressed that he could not understand how the death sentence would be awarded for blasphemy while Boko Haram fighters are pardoned.

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He wrote, “A country that pardons terrorists want to kill a man for blasphemy. I am sure even Saudi Arabia is shocked..the worst form of deception is self-deceit.”

Saudi Arabia regularly hands down the death sentence for drug trafficking among other crimes.

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Yahaya Sharif-Aminu, a resident of Sharifai in Kano metropolis, was accused of committing blasphemy against the prophet in a song he circulated via WhatsApp in March.

The incident caused riots in the city. His family house was burnt down in the process.

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Ogun traffic Corps arrests drivers of unlatched containerised trucks

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