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Coronavirus: NCAA pledges to intensify screening of inbound, outbound passengers at airports

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The Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority (NCAA) says it will intensify screening of inbound and outbound passengers at the international airports.

Mr Sam Adurogboye, General Manager, Public Relations, NCAA, told the Nigeria News Agency in Lagos on Friday that the authority has adequate screening equipment on ground.

NAN reports that the Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire on Friday confirmed the first case of Coronavirus, code-named COVID-19 in Lagos.

The virus was brought into Nigeria by an Italian citizen, who works in Nigeria. He returned from Milan, Italy to Lagos on Feb. 25.

NAN reports that the COVID-19 infection was confirmed by the Virology Laboratory of the Lagos University Teaching Hospital, part of the Laboratory Network of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control.

Adurogboye told NAN that the health checks put in place by the Federal Airports Authority of Nigeria (FAAN) were the same standard practices globally accepted.

He said: “There is a collaborative programme at all our gateways to screen inbound and outbound passengers at the International airports.

“The Port Health, an arm of the Federal Ministry of Health, Lagos State Health officials, Airport Authorities health and Security officials are involved.

“For as long as we are not closing down our airport to flights, we will not rest on our oars in screening passengers to prevent infected individual from coming in,” he said.

Gov. Babajide Sanwo-Olu of the Lagos State had at a press briefing said the case was the first to be reported in Nigeria since the outbreak in China in January 2020.

Sanwo-Olu said the Italian citizen was said to have fell ill on the Feb. 26 and was transferred to Lagos State Biosecurity Facilities for isolation and testing from a health facility in Ogun.

He noted that the patient was presently in strict isolation and in stable condition.

The governor said efforts were ongoing in collaboration with the Federal Ministry of Health and WHO to identify all persons who might have come in contact with the patient.

Sanwo-Olu said these include the airline management, other passengers who were on board the same flight, the company which the patient had business with.

Edited By: Modupe Adeloye/Olagoke Olatoye

Yunus Yusuf: is a graduate and a professionally trained journalist, with experience in national news reporting/editing and verification at the News Agency of Nigeria. NNN is a Nigerian online news portal that publishes breaking news in Nigeria, and across the world. Our journalists are honest, fair, accurate, thorough and courageous in gathering, reporting and interpreting news in the best interest of the public, because truth is the cornerstone of journalism and they strive diligently to ascertain the truth in every news report. Contact: editor[at]nnn.com.ng