Global Upfront Newspapers
Breaking News Cover Health News

Finance, manpower, infrastructure hamper Nigeria’s COVID-19 fight, NCDC boss

…More cases of the COVID-19 likely

…18 Chinese medical experts, supplies coming

…NCDC says confirmed cases in Nigeria 209, not 210

Director-General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, said that despite the support from government and individuals, the efforts to contain COVID-19 in Nigeria were being limited by finance, manpower and infrastructure.

Meanwhile, the NCDC on Saturday said that it committed an error in announcing confirmed cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19), saying that the total number of cases in Nigeria as of 10.30 pm on Friday is 209 and not 210 as earlier reported.

Speaking during the briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 on Saturday, Dr Ihekweazu, also said that the major focus of the government was to increase capacity for testing more samples in the next few days while also lamenting limitation of finance, infrastructure and human resources.

According to him, “we are not just limited by funds and infrastructure, but the biggest limitation is human resources; the people that are already trained in bio-nuclear diagnostic testing. This is not something you can take up people and ask them to volunteer and go into the laboratory and start testing. Today, we have tested about 4,000 people and we will continue to drive up this number. We have fulfilled every requirement for a test so there is nobody that has come forward (without being tested). There has been some delay but every single sample that has come forward has been tested.

“Currently, we have added one more laboratory. We now have eight testing laboratories. We have three laboratories working independently in Lagos; the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, Nigerian Institute for Medical Research and the Biosecurity Centre in Lagos that used to work with LUTH. It has been completely separated. Ibadan and Abakaliki test centres have been activated already. Today (Friday), we are activating the second laboratory in Abuja to support everyone around the area. The next town is Kano; between Sunday and Monday, it will be activated for the northern part of Nigeria.”

On the contribution of the private sector in the battle against COVID-19, Dr Ihekweazu said: “We have some exciting proposals that we are working through with private sector. They have come on board to support us in doing this. Some public sector organisations that have private-sector affiliations like the Nigeria Sovereign Investment Fund Authority are working with us on the proposal to increase laboratory locations in Nigeria. There is a lot of work going on in the background to increase our testing capacity.

“I want to remind everyone that testing will not solve this problem. There is a lot of focus on testing and energy going into it and research at a global stage to validate rapid diagnostic test kits that are being sold around the world. We are waiting for those results. Once they are validated, we will start offering it, until then, we cannot offer it.”

The NCDC DG debunked the insinuation that high-profile people were being favoured in the testing procedure, saying case definition was being followed strictly.

Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, also confirmed that he had been notified of medical supplies from China courtesy of a group of Chinese companies working in Nigeria.

According to him, “a special cargo aircraft shall leave Nigeria in a few days to collect the items which include Personal Protective Equipment and ventilators. Of great interest is that an 18-man team of medical experts from China, including doctors, nurses and medical experts shall come along with the flight to assist us.”

The Minister also hinted that more cases of the COVID-19 might be detected during the remaining days of the lockdown window, calling on officials to speed up their work.

He said: “We are using the small window of opportunity remaining to intensify investigation to identify cases and sources. This is one of the purposes of the lockdown of the two states (Lagos and Ogun) and the FCT. Lagos and other parts will need to speed up their activities to detect and isolate COVID-19 patients. We expect to see an increase in cases during the lockdown as a measure of improvement in case finding. If all measures and social distancing are followed, the incidence of positive cases can be controlled.”

On the correction by the NCDC that the total number of cases in Nigeria as of 10.30 pm on Friday was 209 and not 210, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Osun is 20 and Oyo now has nine. Lagos State retained its lead with 109 cases, followed by the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja which has 41 cases.

Apoligising for the error in its Twitter handle, the NCDC said on Saturday: “On 3rd of April 2020, we reported 26 new cases of #COVID19 in Nigeria. An error has been discovered in this report as follows:

“There were 25 new cases of #COVID19 in Nigeria. The 26th case was a repeat result of a previously confirmed case and not a new case. Of the 25 new cases reported, 1 case was inadvertently reported from Osun state. This case was from Oyo State.

“The correct breakdown is as follows: Lagos- 11, Osun- six, FCT- three, Edo- three, Ondo- one, Oyo- one. As at 10:30 pm 3rd April, there are 209 confirmed cases, 25 discharged and four deaths.

“For a breakdown of cases by states, Lagos has 109 cases, FCT- 41, Osun- 20, Oyo- nine, Akwa Ibom- five, Ogun- four, Edo- seven, Kaduna- four, Bauchi- three, Enugu- two, Ekiti- two, Rivers-one, Benue- one, and Ondo- one. We regret the error in our announcement of new #COVID19 cases in Nigeria yesterday (Friday). The NCDC remains committed to ensuring transparency and accurate reporting of infectious disease cases in Nigeria.”

Advertize With Us

See Also

Buhari coming urgently with critical solution to ENDSARS protests, says NSA

Global Upfront

Fresh From Prison, Brazilian Returnee Arrested At Port Harcourt Airport For Importing 4.56kg Cocaine Concealed In Lawn Mowers’ Tyres – NDLEA

Global Upfront

Mystery death claims another Professor in Kano as CUPP wants FG to declare national health emergency in State

Global Upfront

Twitter Back Up And Running After Brief Outage Left Users Unable To Login Or Post And View Tweets

Global Upfront

U.S. Sixth Fleet Commander Visits Nigeria, Participates In 33-nation Exercise Obangame Express 23

Global Upfront

ISWAP Shura appoints Sani Shuwaram as new leader in strategic move to escalate attacks in Borno State, Northeast Nigeria

Global Upfront

Quick Facts About Late Nollywood Actor Sir David Osagie, His Last Moments

Global Upfront

Importation of COVID-19 Organics (CVO) from Madagascar “simply distasteful” – Pharmaceutical Society of Nigeria President

Global Upfront

Obi-Datti Campaign Council Condemns Post-rally Attack On Peter Obi In Katsina, Katsina State

Global Upfront

U.S. Secretary of State, Blinken, begins 6-day visit to Nigeria, Kenya, and Senegal on Monday

Global Upfront

This website uses Cookies to improve User experience. We assume this is OK...If not, please opt-out! Accept Read More