The Delta Government has lauded the Federal Government for its prompt response in containing the spread of Lassa fever in the state.
The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Mordi Ononye, made the commendation on Friday in Asaba when he received the deployment letter from the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
The Nigeria News Agency reports that following the reported cases of Lassa fever in the state, the federal government recently sent a Rapid Response Team (RRT) from the NCDC to Delta to support the state in response activities.
The commissioner expressed confidence in the RRT, whose leader, Dr Belu Abaye, had worked in the state before now on a similar capacity.
“The RRT will no doubt enhance the capacity of our personnel in tackling infectious diseases such a lassa fever before the completion of their assignment in the state,” Ononye said.
Responding, the RRT leader (Abaye) thanked the commissioner for the warm reception accorded the team and assured him of their determination to deliver on their assignment.
He disclosed that the goal of the RRT was to reduce the case fatality of Lassa fever to less than 10 per cent by ensuring early detection, prompt diagnosis and optimal case management of the disease.
“The terms of reference of the RRT includes but not limited to the support coordination of multi-sectoral Emergency Operation Centre with key involvement of line ministries and other relevant agencies,” Abaye said.
He said the partnership would help for the development and implementation of the state’s Lassa fever preparedness and response plan.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Muhammad Suleiman Tola
30 stranded Nigerians in Lebanon rescued, among 150 awaiting evacuation – NIDCOM
Thirty Nigerians, who were trafficked and left stranded in Lebanon have been rescued, and are among a total of 150 victims awaiting evacuation to Nigeria.
The Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NIDCOM) made this known in a statement by Gabriel Odu of its Media, Public Relations and Protocol Unit on
The commission said the rescue came after a video footage of the stranded Nigerians making an appeal to the Federal Government and well-meaning Nigerians to come to their aid viral on the Internet.
According to it, the appeal for help by the stranded Nigerians led to their rescue by officials of the country’s mission in Lebanon.
The stranded Nigerians have already been relocated to a more conducive apartment.
“They will be part of 150 others to be evacuated to Nigeria after they were trafficked and left stranded in Lebanon.
“The Lebanese Ambassador to Nigeria, Mr Houssam Diab disclosed the evacuation plans when the Management of NIDCOM, led by the Secretary, Dr Sule Bassi, visited that country’s mission in Abuja,” Odu said in the statement.
He quoted Diab as saying that the 150 girls would be returned home in batches with the first group of 110 people leaving Beirut for Lagos on Aug. 12.
The second batch sws expected to arrive Abuja on Aug. 16.
“The diplomat commended efforts of the Lebanese Community and the Oyo State Government who is sponsoring the return of 55 of the girls,” he said.
Responding on behalf of the NIDCOM Chairman/CEO, Mrs Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Secretary of the commission, who acknowledged the excellent ties between Nigeria and Lebanon, urged both countries to sustain the cordial relationship.
Bassi also lauded the Nigerian Ambassador to Lebanon, Amb. Goni Madu Zanna Bura for his dedication and commitment.
He also commended the staff of the Nigerian mission, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Oyo and Ogun state governments and other strategic partners for their efforts.
“As part of the Nigerian Embassy’s Consular responsibility, the ladies in the said video that went viral and many other distressed Nigerian domestic workers were located and relocated to a safer place.
“Suffice it to say that 150 of these stranded victims are expected to be evacuated next week and handed over to NAPTIP, the agency responsible for (dealing with human) trafficking.
“A break down of the evacuees shows that Oyo State had 41, Ogun 21, Lagos 12, Ondo 18, Osun 26, and Imo 3.
Others are Kwara– 9, Enugu — 1, Ekiti — 6, Kogi — 1, Edo — 1, Delta — 3, Ebonyi — 1, Benue — 1, Abia — 1, Akwa Ibom — 1, and Anambra — 1,” he said.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Emmanuel Yashim (NAN)
Plateau PDP set for state congress – Acting chairman
Mr Yakubu Chocho, Acting Chairman of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) in Plateau, says all is now set for the state congress to elect new leaders of the party in the state.
Chocho told News Agency of Nigeria on Tuesday in Jos that arrangements had been put in place to receive the national officers of the party who would conduct the elections.
Consequently, after the expiration of their tenure on May 10, the state executives of the party were constituted into caretaker committee to act for three months.
The acting chairman said that the party had received directives from its national secretariat that the congress would hold on Aug. 8 or Aug.12.
According to him, the state is waiting for the national body of the party to conduct the congress.
“We will also ensure that all delegates keep to social distancing , wearing of face mask and washing of hands. Efforts will be made to provide adequate security for peaceful congresses,” he said.
Chocho added that the party was ready to receive the elected leaders who would be in-charge of its affairs without interference from the state officials.
Edited By: Chinyere Bassey and Abdullahi Yusuf (NAN)
COVID-19: Bayelsa schools ready, safe to re-open – Gov. Diri
Gov. Douye Diri of Bayelsa on Tuesday announced that the state had put in place measures to check the spread of the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) among students in exit classes billed to resume on Wednesday.
Diri gave the assurance at the ‘Safe School Reopening Train-the-Trainer’ programme in Yenagoa.
He said that the government had provided 10,000 face masks, temperature scanners, soap and water for all public and private schools in Bayelsa.
The governor inaugurated a 10-member Safe Schools Reopening Committee headed by his Deputy Chief of Staff, Mr Peter Akpe, to monitor implementation of the safety protocols across the state.
Diri urged the committee to ensure compliance with the safety protocols to curb infection.
He noted that Bayelsa had 339 COVID-19 cases at the moment.
Diri also noted that Rivers had 1,842 cases and Delta 1,520, saying that Bayelsa was listed the 23rd out of 36 states in infection rate.
“Out of the responsibility for the health of our dear children, we decided to close schools on March 26 even before we recorded the index case in Bayless, on April 27, 2020.
“I commend the efforts of our healthcare professionals who I describe as generals in the battlefield.
“With the steps we have taken, teachers have joined in the frontlines of the battle against the pandemic.
“We seek the cooperation of parents, teachers and other stakeholders to prevent teacher-to-student transmission of the virus and vice versa,” Diri said.
In his remarks, Dr Nathaniel Apoku, Co-Chairman of Bayelsa COVID-19 Task Force, said that 90 per cent of the 339 positive cases out of 5,000 people screened for the virus had been discharged.
“We have so far tested 5,000, we have only 24 active cases under our care.
“Our isolation centres are virtually empty, this is due to the commitment, dexterity and funding support by the government.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that other members of the Safe Schools Reopening Committee include Mr Freston Akpor, Permanent Secretary, Bayelsa Ministry of Information, and Mr Walter Liverpool, Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Education.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Ijeoma Popoola (NAN)
Oyo launches state-wide initiative against COVID-19
The Oyo State Government has launched a statewide containment and decontamination response initiative to curtail the spread of COVID-19 across the state.
The training had in attendance representatives of environmental health officers in all the 33 local government areas which had been divided into seven zones.
In her address at the forum, Prof. Olanike Adeyemo, the state’s Team Lead of the Containment and Decontamination Project, said the initiative would focus on the next phase in the containment of COVID-19 in the state.
“COVID-19 has spread beyond Ibadan and what that means is that the government has to be responsive to do what is right.
“You can imagine if there is an incidence in Ibarapa and another one in Iseyin, it would be very difficult for the state containment team to cover all.
“So what the government is doing is to decentralise the containment efforts.
“Containment is not all about decontamination, it is a lot of things, so this is embedded in the local government system. Every local government has an environmental health unit.
“These are the people that are being trained because they are on the staff of the Oyo State government already to be able to take up this task as frontliners,” she said.
Adeyemo said 77 environmental health officers were being trained while each team had been provided with a revolving N500,000 seed grant for the purchase of chemicals and logistics.
She canvassed the need for self policing, adding that compliance form had been made available to report violators of COVID-19 guidelines.
Speaking on the high rate of COVID-19 cases in the state, Adeyemo said there was the need to work more on compliance to reduce infections.
Adeyemo said: “If you look at the mortality rate and you look at Oyo State and compare it with Edo state that is behind us and you compare the mortality, definitely they are under reporting in those states.
“I think Oyo State is doing more testing and we are reporting a closer to accurate number and that is why we are high there.
“But when you compare the mortality rate for people behind Oyo State on the NCDC list of confirmed cases then you will see that their mortality is higher.
“And it is just science, the more the cases the more likely people will die. So it’s easy to extrapolate that those states that have very high mortality but low numbers of confirmed cases are under reporting.”
Also speaking, Mr Mojeed Mogbonjubola, the Deputy Chief of Staff to the Governor, said the decentralisation of containment was the initiative of the administration.
“It is quite unfortunate that the pandemic is spreading really wide and we couldn’t contain it in Ibadan.
“What His Excellency is trying to do in conjunction with the University of Ibadan is to extend the committee’s team to other regions of the state.
“This is about a call to service. Like I always advise people it is a privilege for everybody to be part of this and it is something that will stay with us for a very long time.
“Since there is no vaccine to control the virus the only way is to contain it and decontaminate affected zones,” he said.
In his remarks, Alhaji Akeem Azeez, the Personal Assistant to the Governor, urged residents to own their actions as well as their safety since the virus had spread all over the state.
Mr Tunde Adeyanju, the Permanent Secretary in the Ministry of Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs, said there was the need for a very good response in view of the rate of infections in the state.
Prof. Victoria Adetunji, a technical expert in the team, urged participants to adhere to precautions in handling the decontamination equipment while engaging in evaluation of their activities.
NAN reports that the training programme featured presentation of the containment equipment to the seven zones and practical session on mixing chemicals and handling of the equipment.
Edited By: Mufutau Ojo) (NAN)