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No plan to order fresh lockdown over COVID-19 third wave – NEC

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No plan to order fresh lockdown over COVID-19 third wave – NEC

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The National Economic Council (NEC), on Thursday, guaranteed that there was “no indication of an imminent lockdown”, as the country prepares for the third wave of COVID-19.

Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, made this known in a briefing to State House journalists after the virtual NEC meeting chaired by Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

While expressing the outcome of the meeting, Sanwo-Olu disclosed that the Vice President assured that NEC would call for an emergency meeting on the COVID-19 third wave, whenever there is a need for it.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) had warned of the spread of COVID-19 Delta variant, together with the inconsistent use of proven public health measures which, it said, increased in both case numbers and deaths.

Sanwo-Olu said, “We will be reviewing on a weekly basis, like every two to three days, what the trends are; the chairman of the council has also mentioned to us that if there is a need for an emergency meeting, he will call one.

“But, assurances were given by the NCDC and the Presidential Task Force, working with relevant states like Lagos, to be tracking and monitoring what is happening almost on daily basis.

“So, we do not think that we are there; we do not have any indication that we will get there; so we are preparing ourselves to ensure that as much as possible, we can very quickly flatten the curve.”

The Governor added that Director General, NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, had provided a global insight of what had been happening in the past one month, with Nigeria having 168, 552 cases reported as at July 15, and 1,993 active cases.

States had discharged more than 140, 000 people, while only 2,124 deaths were recorded so far, Sanwo-Olu quoted the NCDC as saying, in addition to the fact that the positivity rates had gone up, despite the low number of cases in the nation.

Sanwo-Olu said Ihekweazu told NEC that Lagos State had the highest burden of 70 per cent to 80 per cent of the cases in the nation, having recorded increases in the number of cases since 10 weeks ago.

The Governor said, “In the last two weeks, we have seen an increase from a positivity average of about 1.5 per cent to positivity average nationally of about 3.5 per cent; Lagos has seen a positivity of 5.5 per cent in the last two weeks; so Lagos, Rivers and Kwara from the report have seen increases in positivity rates.

“It is important for us to know that the Delta variant, which is the new variant, is also in our country and has also been identified in a total of 103 countries globally.

“The Delta variant is 60 per cent more transmissible than the Alfa variant; so, we are watching all the trends and the NCDC and Lagos will be working collaboratively.”


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