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NOA embarks on sensitisation of electorate in North/West

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Sensitisation

Ahead of Saturday’s governorship election, the National Orientation Agency (NOA) has embarked on sensitisation of the electorate in all the seven states in the North West geopolitical zone.

Director-General of the agency, Dr Garba Abari, led the exercise at a two-day zonal workshop for citizen groups and other Stakeholders on civic and voter Education in Kaduna on Wednesday.

Abari, represented by NOA’s Project Director, Mr David Akeji, said “The main thrust of this workshop for the seven states of North West is to build the stakeholders’ capacity.

“And to assist NOA to enlighten citizens on how to vote to avoid vote buying, invalid and voided votes.’’

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the event sponsored by Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA) to address high rate of rejected, invalid and voided votes during the Presidential and National Assembly elections.

NNN reports that Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) reported that total of 1,289,607 votes were rejected during the exercise.

Abari went further that “We have so many political parties and their symbols are similar, so the voter needs to be enlightened on how to recognise them.

“We are working in our offices in the 774 local government areas. We are showing samples of the parties’ symbols on a large poster to enable the voter identify the one he wants to vote. “

Meanwhile, Kaduna State Government has said the workshop would help voters in the state to identify the political parties of their choice.

Permanent Secretary in office of the Head of Civil Service of the State, Malam Ibrahim Jere, who represented the state government, commended the effort.

He said “This should have taken place since, but we should repeat the process on and on. There are lots of people that don’t know how to vote. Kaduna State has lots of commitment to voter education.

“This is not just about 2019 elections, but there are people who just turned 18, people should know who they want to elect and how to vote.

“This workshop can address the high number of invalid, voided votes we had in the last elections. “

Also, Executive Director, African Center for Leadership Strategy and Development, Mr Monday Osasah frowned at the poor turnout during the last election.

He called for intense mobilisation to cover the gaps noticed during the exercise.

“There was something missing in the last Presidential and National Assembly Elections, and what was missing was the poor turnout of voters which did not reflect the number of registered voters in each state.

“There should have been mobilisation of voters to be part of the elections. This workshop will help in mobilising the people to come out and determine who should govern them,“ he said.

On his part, the Kaduna State Director of NOA, Malam Zubairu Galadima blamed politicians and political parties for not educating their party members and supporters on the proper handling of the ballot paper during elections.

Galadima called on the parties to educate their supporters more to enable them know how to vote during elections.

SSA/JTJ

Shuaib Sadiq: 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

General news

Eid el-Fitr: NOA urges Nigerians to observe precautionary measures against COVID-19

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As Nigerians join other Muslims worldwide to mark the 2020 Eid-el-Fitr amid the coronavirus pandemic, the National Orientation Agency (NOA) has urged citizens to observe all precautionary measures against the disease.

The Director General of NOA, Mr Garba Abari, made the call in a Sallah message to the Muslim faithful in Nigeria, a statement by the agency’s Head of Press Unit, Mr Paul Odenyi, said.

Abari also urged them to imbibe the lessons of Ramadan, some of which are discipline, selflessness, and piety.

According to the director general, the month of Ramadan is a period that Muslims should take advantage of to strengthen their faith and stay safe from the ravaging coronavirus by adhering strictly to the precautionary measures put in place.

He said leaders at the local level should take responsibility for enforcing movement restriction orders, inspiring compliance with all advisories by government in line with the spirit of Sallah.

“We cannot afford to be careless or nonchalant about safety precautions in our religious and cultural observations.

“We must be cautious (so as) not to facilitate community transmission of COVID19.

“Leaders, especially in religious and traditional communities, must take responsibility for the safety of the members of their communities from COVID-19 as they interact.

“They can do this by ensuring that prescribed social distancing, use of face masks, regular hand washing, and sanitisation are observed in our communities,” he said

The NOA chief urged Muslims to keep praying for divine protection of Nigerians from the coronavirus, and for the speedy recovery of those already infected.

Edited By: Emmanuel Yashim (NAN)

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NOA decries non-adherence to COVID-19 precautionary measures by Ihiala LG residents

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Mr Ndubuisi IIodigwe, National Orientation Agency (NOA) Community Mobilisation Officer, said that the people in most rural areas need to be more educated on the importance of observing COVID-19 precautionary measures.

IIodigwe made the remark on Friday during NOA’s inauguration of the second phase of sensitisation campaign on COVID-19 preventive measures in Ihiala Local Government Area of the state.

He said that the team visited some markets at Nkwo Agba, Ihiala-Ozu, Isseke and some central motor parks and town union meetings in Ihiala and Okija communities for the sensitisation.

Ilodigwe said that the rural dwellers had yet to key properly into directives of the World Health Organisation (WHO) and medical expert directives on how to avoid the spread of the virus.

He said the precautionary measures which included social distancing, hand washing with soap and running water as well as the effective use of sanitiser and face mask were not observed.

IIodigwe said that the visit was apt because the rural dwellers in various places visited had exhibited non-chalant attitude in putting on face masks.

“Almost all the traders were seen very busy striving toward making profits from their businesses without precaution and some had shown over-dependence on the government palliative measures,’’ he said.

He urged the people of the communities to maintain the measures put in place against COVID-19 as it was for their own benefit.

IIodigwe said that the essence of the campaign by the NOA officials in the area was to ensure that the rural dwellers understood that the fight against the COVID-19 was serious.

“The people were informed that social distancing, handwashing with soap and running water, effective use of sanitisers and face masks were all they needed to do to be live.

Ilodigwe said that the people of the area observed the curfew directives from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. with levity.

He said that all the precautionary measures were aimed to fight the pandemic and advised the people to comply with governments directives for success to be recorded in the fight.

Ilodigwe commended the approach and efforts of all tiers of government in the fight against the spread of the virus in the country.

Mr Kene Obiegwu, a native of the community, said that they were doing their best as they were not used to all the directives.

Another trader said that the face mask was very discomforting but promised to keep the measures.

Chief Ifeanyi Otiji, a Motorist, said that they were doing their best to comply but needed time to get used to the processes.

Edited By: Edwin Nwachukwu/Adeleye Ajayi (NAN)

 

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Health

COVID-19: UNICEF, NOA urge parents to immunise children against killer diseases

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The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) and the National Orientation Agency (NOA) , have urged mothers and healthcare givers to continue immunising children against child-killer diseases amid COVID-19 pandemic.

The agencies gave the advice at a one-day sensitisation programme for journalists tagged “Media Orientation Meeting for Measles Campaign” held on Wednesday in Owerri.

The Director of NOA in Imo, Mr Vitus Ekeocha, said it had become necessary to sensitise members of the public, especially nursing mothers on the need to access primary healthcare centers to immunise their children.

He said that most mothers and care givers had, in the confusion created by the emmergence of Coronavirus, forgotten and abandoned the immunisatiuon of their children, which he said, had grave consequences.

Ekeocha said the programme was an enlightenment campaign on vaccination against measles and other child-killer diseases and enjoined media houses to help propagate the message.

COVID-19 is a war which should be fought with all the arsenal the government has. Most mothers at the present stituation may not remember to go and immunise their children.

“There is need to sensitise mothers and care givers that in spite of the pandemic, they should not forget to immunise their children and wards and disregard rumours associated with the COVID-19 pandemic vaccine.

“The press, through their various medium, are enjoined to reach out to the people. Everyone in Imo is expected to know the importance of immunisation,” Ekeocha said.

Also, Dr Chibuzo Okoroama, an Immunisation Officer with Imo State Primary Health Care Developmnt Agency (ISPHCDA) in an “Overview of Measles Campaign” described measles as a highly infectious viral disease caused by measles virus that causes death of children globally.

She noted that there was no specific antiviral treatment for measles but that it could be prevented by immunisation with measles vaccine.

Okoroama listed some necessary children vaccines, their mode of adminstration and dosage.

They include Measles Vaccine for measles, BCG for tuberculosis, for poliomyelitis, Hepatitis B Vaccine, Yellow Fever and Rotavirus vaccines.

According to her, measles is spread through contact with nose and throat secretions in airborne droplets released when an infected person sneezes or coughs.

She, therefore, urged parents to ensure their children were immunised at the right time with correct doses.

Earlier, the UNICEF Programme Officer in Imo, Mr Chigozie Ojiaku noted that vaccination or immunisation is the right of every child which should not be denied them.

Ojiaku urged mothers to ensure complete immunisation processes for their children.

He harped on the need to improve on the health indices of the state through immunisation, hence the need for people of the state to get the right messages on immunisation.

Ojiaku said the media, as news gate keepers, waged a lot of influence on what the people should know and believe, appealing to them to promote news on immunisation.

Mrs Violet Igwe, Social Moblisation and Technical Officer and Director ICT in the state Ministry of Information, said information moulded opinion of people, as such its powers could not be overemphasised.

She called on the media to disseminate the information on measles vaccination and discourage propaganda on immunisation against the measles.

The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the journalists were drawn from the print, electronic and online media.

Edited By: Folasade Adeniran/Maureen Atuonwu (NAN)

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General news

COVID-19: NOA commences door-to-door sensitisation on in 19 states.

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) says it has commenced door-to-door and street-to-street sensitisation in 19 states, as a further measure to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the country.

The Director-General of NOA, Mr Garba Abari, stated this on Tuesday in Abuja at a news briefing on the agency’s observation, report and efforts in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic in Nigeria.

Abari said that the 19 states include Lagos, Ogun, Kano, Kwara, Enugu, Katsina, Kaduna, Ekiti, Delta, Edo, Benue, Enugu, Akwa Ibom, Ondo, Oyo, Bauchi, Rivers, Ondo and the FCT.

He said that the agency observed that there was persistent disbelief of the danger and impact of COVID-19 among Nigerians, in spite of the awareness of the reality of the disease.

“In spite the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases and deaths across the country, you find out that even at some high levels, people still take it for granted.

“Many respected opinion leaders still hold and spread disbelief among Nigerians. So many myths about the COVID-19 pandemic has been ranging from conspiracies about some persons using the pandemic to make quick gains.

“Also the claims of certain herbal concoctions that can cure COVID-19 are being peddled among Nigerians especially on social media.

NOA has devoted much efforts in the recent weeks to debunk these myths, also with the bulk messaging on COVID-19, which has been rather intellectual for people at the grassroots, where illiteracy is still high.

“Words and phrases like “Social Distancing”, “Self-isolation”, “Co-morbidity”, etc, are over the heads of grassroots people and need to be stepped down to their level,” he said.

He expressed concern that the lockdown which was initially effective, however, subsequently waned in efficacy, especially in cities where enforcement measures were concentrated.

The NOA boss also noted that in the sub-urban and rural areas, business continued almost as usual in spite of the lockdown.

He, however, said that most religious centers complied with the ban on gatherings especially in the cities.

According to him, security operatives in some cases are compromising the ban on inter-state movement by accepting inducements, in exchange of granting travellers passage.

NOA will be partnering with the Independent Corrupt Practices Commission (ICPC) to provide toll-free numbers to enable Nigerians report such misconducts.

“There were lots of opportunistic crimes in some communities around the country in the wake of the lockdown. We therefore call on security agencies to increase their vigilance to stem such crimes,” he said.

While commending the media for the support in the fight against COVID-19, he however, appealed to them to go a step further by availing the agency free airtime to deepen COVID-9 sensitisation.

Abari reiterated his earlier call on Nigerians to strictly observe personal hygiene, social distancing and safety measures approved by health authorities to avoid contracting the virus under this partial lockdown.

The NOA boss said that, “the gradual and phased easing of the lockdown does not warrant carelessness.

“Rather, it calls for stricter compliance to the guidelines issued by the Presidential Task Force on COVID19 and the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC).”

He urged Nigerians to intensify the practice of personal hygiene, especially regular hand washing with soap and water, or use of alcohol based hand sanitizers and use of face masks in public.

Abari said that maintenance of two meters distance from other people, refraining from handshakes, abstaining from gatherings of more than 20 persons and not going outdoors unless absolutely necessary, would help to curb the spread of the disease.

He also stressed the need for prompt reporting of cases of continuous dry cough or sneezing, difficulty in breathing and high temperature to the NCDC for immediate action.

PO/

Edited By: Bola Akingbehin and Isaac Aregbesola (NAN)

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COVID-19: Make wearing of facemasks mandatory for residents, NOA urges Adamawa govt.

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Adamawa has appealed to the state government to make the wearing of facemasks in public mandatory for the people of the state.
The state acting Director of the agency, Mohammed Gabdo, told the News Agency of Nigeria in Yola on Friday that any person caught not using facemasks should be punished.
Gabdo also urged the state government to provide free facemasks for the residents to curb the spread of the coronavirus pandemic in the state.
The NOA director said that this would help government to save the cost of treating those who might contract the virus as a result of not using facemasks.
“I am appealing to government to provide free facemasks for everyone entering public places, especially places of worship and markets.
“This will serve as a preventive measure against the spread of COVID-19,’’ he said.
Gabdo commended the state government for lifting the ban placed on religious gatherings in the state, thus enabling worshippers hold their services.
He, however, enjoined religious leaders and their followers to abide by all the preventive measures issued by the government and health professionals, especially the use of facemasks and maintaining regular hand washing.

Edited By: Oluyinka Fadare and (NAN)‘Wale Sadeeq

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Boundary closure: Report erring travellers to security agents, NOA tells Oyo residents

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) has urged residents of Oyo State to report anyone suspected to have breached the inter-state movement restriction order in their respective communities to security agents for appropriate action.
The state Director of the agency, Mrs Dolapo Dosunmu, stated this while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria on Saturday in Ibadan.
She urged leaders of the border and inter-state boundary communities to be vigilant and report any invasion of strangers to security personnel around.
Such actions, Dosunmu said, would further enhance government’s efforts at curtailing the spread of COVID-19 in the state.
The director expressed concern about the increasing migration of people from neighbouring countries into Nigeria through the land borders in the state.
“Interstate movement by erring travellers is still ongoing despite the restriction order. So if proactive steps are not taken immediately to control this, it can lead to increase in the cases of COVID-19 in the state,” she said.
Dosunmu further admonished the leaders of the border communities not to compromise the efforts of the security personnel but work with them to ensure proper enforcement of the restriction order.
The NOA boss commended residents for complying with the laid down guidelines to curb the spread of the pandemic in the state.
She urged them to continue to maintain hygienic lifestyle, social distancing, washing of hands regularly or use of hand sanitiser.
Dosunmu also commended security agents for the enforcement of the interstate restriction order, urging them to do more to ensure that the order was not breached.

Edited By: Buhari Bolaji and (NAN)‘Wale Sadeeq

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Entertainment

NNOA calls for strict compliance of hygiene, safety measures

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) has urged Nigerians to adhere strictly to the hygiene and safety measures approved by health authorities to avoid contracting the virus.

The Director- General of NOA, Dr Garba Abari, stated this while reacting to non- compliance of some Nigerians in parts of the country, in a statement signed by the agency’s Head of Press Unit, Mr Paul Odenyi.

Abari lamented that a lot of Nigerians have shown disregard for social distancing, use of face masks, stay-at-home order for non-essential workers and other safety measures, since the commencement of the partial lockdown.

He warned that such risky behaviour could be detrimental to the fight against COVID19 as it could expose many to contracting the virus.

Abari noted that the government and relevant stakeholders have been working tirelessly to contain the virus, since the index case was recorded in Nigeria.

The NOA boss stressed that such efforts would not yield the desired results, if citizens do not take personal responsibility for their protection against the virus, by adhering strictly to prescribed guidelines, protocols and precautions.

According to him, the gradual and phase easing of the lockdown does not warrant carelessness, but rather, calls for stricter compliance to the guidelines issued by the Presidential Task Force on COVID19 and the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC).

He, therefore, urged Nigerians to strengthen the practice of personal hygiene, especially regular hand washing with soap and water or use of alcohol based hand sanitizers and use of nose masks in public.

He added that maintenance of two meters distance from other people, refraining from handshakes, abstaining from gatherings of more than 20 persons and not going outdoors unless absolutely necessary could help to curtail the spread of the disease

He also stressed the need for prompt reporting of cases of continuous coughing or sneezing, difficulty in breathing and high temperature to the NCDC for immediate action.

Edited By: Ekemini Ladejobi (NAN)

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Metro

Lockdown: Plateau borders still porous – NOA

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Plateau, says the state borders which are meant to be closed,as part of measures to combat the spread of COVID-19 in the state, are porous.

The Director of NOA in the state, Mr Bulus Dabit,  told the News Agency of Nigeria on Thursday in Jos that people from other states have continued to gain access into Plateau.

Dabit noted that security officials from the neighbouring states constituted the highest number of persons who trooped into Plateau unhindered.

”I am afraid to say that the borders in Plateau State are still porous because people have continued to make their way into the state unhindered.

”I have observed that most of these people are security officials and because they have solidarity among themselves, they pass through checkpoints easily.

”I also believe that when they go back to their communities, people will be scared to ask them questions or report them because they are security officials.

“l want government to look into this before it gets out of hand,” he said.

He called on government to evolve a community driven surveillance structure to checkmate the inflow of people into the state, so as to ensure easy tracking of suspected COVID-19 cases and nipping the spread in a bud.

He said that surveillance should not be left to the medical and security teams alone as people have devised new methods to enter the state.

“There should be a community driven surveillance structure that will help people in the community identify and report people who come into the state.

”Traditional rulers should be made to set up community surveillance groups that will identify and report people who go into their communities without submitting themselves to authority for testing.

”They should be mainstreamed into the surveillance structure in the fight against coronavirus,” he said.

The state director of NOA also noted that people were not observing social distancing in the state.

According to him, water scarcity, insufficient money in banks and ATMs as well as hunger are some of the “natural factors” that could militate against social distancing.

”There are some socio-cultural issues that will naturally make social distancing difficult. Imagine if there is water scarcity and so many people want to fetch water at the same time.

”Long queues at the ATM’s and banks will make social distancing impossible.

“Hunger is also a cause, because when palliative is being shared people gather in a place and this is very dangerous,” he noted.

Dabit said that distribution of palliatives should be better managed so as to avoid overcrowding when such gestures are made.

Edited By: Chinyere Nwachukwu/Ejike Obeta (NAN)

 

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COVID-19: NOA wants Nigerians avoid social interaction to end community transmission 

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The Kaduna State Directorate of the National Orientation Agency (NOA) on Wednesday called on Nigerians to avoid any form of social interaction to end community transmission of COVID-19.

The state Director, Mr Zubairu Galadima-Soba,  made the call while speaking with the News Agency of Nigeria in Kaduna.

NOA is appealing to members of the public to be wary of the interactions they do within their neighbourhoods and in their daily activities.

“Transmission of COVID-19 has assumed a frightening proportion that we can  say there is community transmission.

“We are appealing to everyone to be careful and to ensure that we use the safety tips given by health professionals.

“People should ensure they use face masks effectively; they should also use hand gloves and hand sanitiser,’’ Galadima-Soba said.

 

The director decried the attitude of some residents who come out to chat with friends as well as receive visitors, saying that these must stop to tackle community transmission of the virus.

Galadima-Soba urged all residents to be careful and intensify personal hygiene  by ensuring regular  hand washing and other safety measures.

 

According to him, it would be better to take proactive measures and forestall transmission than  go for management which was not easy for the people, health workers and  governments.

 

The director commended Kaduna Government for opening temporary markets within communities to avoid crowding of central markets,.

He urged members of the public to be more careful to save their lives.

Edited By: Razak Owolabi/Ijeoma Popoola (NAN)

 

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Workers Day: NOA director-general tasks workers on greater commitment, productivity

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The Director-General, National Orientation Agency (NOA), Dr Garba Abari, on Friday urged Nigerian workers to ensure increased commitment to duty.

Abari, in a goodwill message to Nigerian workers to mark the 2020 Workers Day, said the need for such commitment has further been underlined by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Workers need to be more committed to their duties in order to achieve greater productivity that would be required to re-activate the economy after COVID-19,’’ he urged in a statement signed by the agency’s Head of Press Unit, Mr Paul Odenyi.

He restated the fact that the COVID-19 pandemic has greatly affected the world’s economy, and pointed out that returning it to a better state would require a lot.

“The full strength, energy and initiative of the working class would be required to be able to return the Nigerian economy to its normal level and even ensure growth in the near future.

“So, whether working from the office or from home, Nigerian workers should bring their expertise to bear in their various organisations and industries to ensure the eradication of the virus in our country.”

Abari also urged Nigerian workers to justify the confidence reposed in them and the goodwill shown to them by President Muhammadu Buhari in the recent implementation of the new minimum wage.

“They can do this by rising to the occasion at this time when the nation needs them most.’’

Abari, while saluting the doggedness and sacrifice of medical personnel and other frontline workers in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, said the disease could only be contained in Nigeria by Nigerians.

“In the days ahead, the current situation will call for greater sacrifice and dedication from Nigerian workers to whom our dear nation has given a lot.

“There is no better time to manifest our patriotism as workers than in these difficult times.

“As we pay our respects to workers who have made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of duty fighting COVID-19, we also pray for their repose and the consolation of their families.

“We must urge other workers not to relent in giving their best in service for the safety of the ones we love and for the sake of our dear nation,” the NOA director-general said.

(
Edited By: Remi Koleoso and Olawale Alabi) (NAN)

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COVID-19: NOA takes safety campaign to rural communities in Enugu

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA), Enugu State Directorate, says it has sensitised no fewer than 170 communities in the state on the dangers and precutionary measures against Coronavirus (COVID-19).

In a statement on Wednesday in Enugu, the Head, Media and Protocol of the Directorate, Mr McDonald Odenigbo, said that the campaign was done in partnership with UNICEF, Enugu Field Office.

Odenigbo said that the campaign which was in its first phase involved mobile messaging and distribution of literature on COVID-19.

He said that subsequent phases would cover the rest of the communities in the state.

According to him, the mobile messaging campaign is intended to educate members of the public, especially those in rural communities on the myths, facts and reality of the pandemic.

“By so doing, we intend to mobilise citizens to imbibe and adhere to the hygiene protocols of regular hand washing with soap under running water or the use of alcohol-based sanitiser.

“We equally want them to practise social distancing and to stay at home in order to remain safe,” Odenigbo said.

EOA/

Edited By: Dorcas Jonah/Ejike Obeta (NAN)

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Foreign

Final span of new Genoa bridge raised in presence of Italian PM

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The final steel span of Genoa’s new bridge was raised in the presence of Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte on Tuesday, Fincantieri, the company that built the bridge, said in a statement.

The new structure replaces the Morandi Bridge, a viaduct that collapsed in the northwestern coastal city of Genoa on Aug. 14, 2018, killing 43 people.

“Today we suture a wound … but we also know this wound can never heal entirely, because there were 43 victims,” Conte told a televised press conference.

“This construction site is a symbol not just for Genoa but for Italy as a whole,” because it shows Italy’s capacity to come together and rise again after a national tragedy, said the prime minister.

“The biggest act of love we owe ourselves and our country is to make a commitment to making a new beginning together, with solidarity and with each doing his or her part,” said Conte, in reference to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and ahead of the end of a nationwide lockdown on May 3.

Designed for free by Italian starchitect and Genoa native, Renzo Piano, the new bridge is 1,067 meters long and made up of 17,400 tons of steel, said Fincantieri, the publicly-owned Italian company that built the bridge.

According to the company, the new bridge will be equipped with special sensors that will make the Genoa viaduct the “first smart bridge in Europe.”

Best known for its shipbuilding division, Fincantieri has constructed more than 7,000 vessels in its 230-year history.

(XINHUA)

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Health

NOA fully involved in campaign against COVID-19 – Lai Mohammed

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Alhaji Lai Mohammed, the Minister of information, Culture and Tourism, says the National Orientation Agency (NOA), is fully involved in the campaign to stop the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Mohammed said this while responding to questions at the Presidential Taskforce on COVID-19 briefing, on Thursday in Abuja, against the backdrop of allegations that the agency had been docile.

He said allegations that NOA was not doing enough in terms of sensitisation, awareness creation and public enlightenment about COVID-19, were unfounded.

He said that a credible independent poll conducted, had certified that a greater percentage of Nigerians were aware of COVID-19, adding that only six per cent were unaware of the pandemic.

The minister said that NOA was doing a good job  it was fully involved in the campaign against COVID-19.

“Some Nigerians said they were immune, others said that they believe in God that the virus would not touch them; and still others are taking preventive measures to forestall the spread,” he said.

Mohammed, however, urged Nigerians not to take such `fake news’ seriously.

In a related development, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama, the Minister of Foreign Affairs, said that the ministry now had a list of Nigerians in Diaspora that had indicated interest to return to Nigeria.

He said that the Airline that would fly them back home had already been selected.

“Though the number is high and the country’s isolation facilities will not be able to contain all of them.

“They would be brought in batches according to the number of isolation facilities available, in order not to congest the centres,” Onyeama said.

Edited By: Debo Oshundun/Nyisom Fiyigon Dore (NAN)

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Easter: NOA boss urges Nigerians to have sober reflection on the significance of the season

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Mrs Dolapo Dosunmu,  the Director of National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Oyo State, has urged Nigerians not to see 2020 Easter celebration as a time for merry making,  but a time for sober reflection on the significance of the season.

Dosunmu made the call in a statement in Ibadan on Saturday while felicitating with residents of Oyo State as they celebrate the Easter amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.

The director enjoined Nigerians to put into practice the lesson of Easter.

She also urged citizens  to emulate Jesus Christ by showing love and sacrifice to one another and advise them against stigmatising those who have survived and won the battle against the Coronavirus disease.

She further implored residents to maintain healthy hygiene and observe all precautionary measures listed by the World Health Organisation to curtail the spread of the disease.

Á

Edited By: Constance Imasuen/Tajudeen Atitebi
(NAN)

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Health

World Health Day: NOA commends healthcare workers

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) has commended the efforts of healthcare workers globally and especially in Nigeria for their steadfastness in the discharge of their noble duties in fighting Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.

The commendation was given by Mr Olusegun Adeyemi, the Kwara  State Director of NOA, in a statement issued to commemorate the 2020 World Health Day.

According to Adeyemi, at a time like this when we are caught in the web of the Coronavirus pandemic, it is obvious that health professionals are the front line as soldiers.

He said they are in the assault against COVID-19 and we cannot but appreciate the courage and commitment of this special set of people.

Adeyemi noted that the theme of 2020 celebration “Support nurses and midwives” is apt and every stakeholder should do all that is necessary to make the work of healthcare professionals easier.

The NOA director further charged all and sundry to cooperate with government directives as we all deal with the scourge in the state and the country at large.

Edited By: Fela Fashoro/Muhammad Suleiman Tola
(NAN)

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Health

COVID-19: NOA tasks Nigerians on prompt report of suspected cases

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Jigawa, has called on Nigerians to promptly report any suspected cases of Coronavirus to the appropriate authorities.

Shuaibu Haruna, the State Director of the Agency, made the call in a statement on Tuesday in Dutse.

Haruna also charged the agency’s Chief Orientation and Mobilization Officers (COMOs) in the 27 Local Government Areas of the state to be committed in their duties as members of the Local government task force committees on Covid-19 in their respective areas.

He stressed that the country was in a critical moment as a result of the global pandemic, therefore, directed for prompt reporting of the events.

The director also commended the Jigawa State Government for the proactive measures adopted to contain the spread of the virus in the state.

“NOA called on all Nigerians to maintain hand washing, social distancing, stay at home directive and other precautionary measures as advised by ministry of health.

“Also Nigerians are advised to promptly report all suspected cases to the appropriate authority.

“We also commended Jigawa chapter of ALGON under the leadership of Hon Aminu Sani, who is the Chairman of Gumel local council for the harmonious working relationship with all local government councils’ chairmen and NOA, particularly our officers across the state,” he said.

Edited By: Modupe Adeloye/Rabiu Sani Ali
(NAN)

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COVID-19: Chinese experts coming to share experince only -DG NOA

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Dr Garba Abari, Director-General, National Orientation Agency (NOA), said on Saturday that the Federal Government was not importing Chinese medical experts to directly take charge of the fight against Covid-19 pandemic.

Abari states this when he featured at the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) live programme in Abuja.

He explained that the 18-man Chinese medical team are only coming to share experience with the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on how they were able to handle their own case.

He noted that whatever information the Chinese medical team made available to NCDC would be filtered and apply to address the peculiar challenge of the country on Covid-19.

“Because this is a global pandemic and from wherever assistance comes, you cannot reject it.

“For instance, the United States is opening its doors to all volunteers that will come and assist them because they are also getting overwhelmed.

“Despite its finest medical facilities and expertise, yet US is now saying any form of assistance coming from anywhere that will add value to the fight against Covid-19 is welcome.

“It is not as if the government of Nigeria is not appreciating efforts of its own medical experts. This is the time when Nigeria is proud and appreciating its own medical experts and showcasing it best.

“This is the time that Nigeria is moping all its competent hands, both active and inactive and bring them together with a view to ensure that we beef up competent human capacity required to address the issue at hand,” he said.

Abari, who said that humanity was put under challenge by Covid-19, stressed the need for everybody to contribute meaningfully to the war against the virus.

He said that the Federal Government was responding favourable in the provision of palliatives to the vulnerable groups, including persons living with disabilities through the Ministry of Humanitarian Affairs and Social Investment.

Abari appealed to citizens who had shown symptoms of the virus to quickly present themselves to NCDC for testing and proper medical attention to avoid endangering the lives of other people.

He also admonished citizens to maintain high standard of personal hygiene by washing their hands constantly or apply alcohol based sanitiser.

The DG also enjoined citizens to be law abiding by obeying the stay-at-home directives of government, saying, “together we shall defeat Covid-19.”

Edited By: Ifeyinwa Okonkwo/Ismail Abdulaziz
(NAN)

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NOA in Gombe State intensifies awareness campaign against COVID-19

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) in Gombe State says it has intensified efforts to raise the residents’ awareness of preventive measures against the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Mrs Sarah Yapwa, The State Director of NOA in Gombe state, said this in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Gombe on Tuesday.

Yapwa said the exercise was being carried out to curtail the rising number of cases of coronavirus and the impact across the globe, and pointed out that there were no vaccines against the pandemic yet.

According to her, NOA has put up jingles and other means of sensitising the people in English and Hausa, so as to ensure that everyone got the message.

She said that the agency was collaborating with the state government in the fight against COVID-19 pandemic in the state.

“In line with the directive from our Director-General, Dr Garba Abari, for a sustained awareness campaign on preventive measures, we have started grassroots campaign in all the 11 local government areas.

“We have radio jingles which are being aired twice a week on some local radio stations in the state. We also have foot soldiers that are in all the local government areas sensitising the communities.

“Our message is: regularly wash your hands with antiseptic soaps, avoid crowded gathering, ensure social distancing, avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

We also inform them of the symptoms and who to call in suspected cases,” she said.

The state director said NOA was also sensitising religious leaders and traditional leaders on their roles and on the fact that churches and mosques are always very crowded.

“I can tell you that the level of response and acceptance of our sensitisation is very impressive. Religious leaders must ensure that they adhere to government directive to preserve the lives of worshippers.

“If any religious leader refuses to adhere, God forbids any of their members die, who will they preach to?

“It’s a time to show understanding and we all must show strong commitment to supporting government,” the state director said.

Yapwa appealed to stakeholders to support the agency in the sensitisation programme.

“We are visiting all media houses today to solicit their support and to appeal to them to play our jingles as their corporate social responsibility,’’ he added.

Edited Shuaib Sadiq/Ejike Obeta

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COVID-19: NOA embarks on awareness campaign in Jigawa

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The Jigawa office of the National Orientation Agency (NOA) has embarked on a  massive campaign to create awareness on the  preventive measures against the Coronavirus pandemic in the state.

 

Mr Shuaibu Haruna, the agency’s Director in the state, told  the Nigeria News Agency on Tuesday in Dutse that the campaign would be done in the 27 local government areas of the state.

 

Haruna said  that the agency decided to embark on the campaign to educate the people on the symptoms and preventive tips  they would watch out for against the pandemic disease.

 

He said  that this was  to curtail  the spread of the disease in the state.

 

The coordinator added that the agency had mobilised its Chief Mobilization and Orientation Officers (COMOs) in the 27 LGAs to create awareness and educate people at the grassroots on preventive measures to protect themselves.

 

According to him, the agency will  continue to collaborate with relevant stakeholders to educate people on preventive tips against communicable diseases as well as promote healthy habit.

 

He, therefore, advised the people on the importance of hand washing and other preventive measures to avoid contracting diseases.

 

NAN reports that Jigawa State had on Monday confirmed  that three persons tested  negative to Coronavirus. He said that they  had  just returned to the country from Saudi Arabia where they performed the Lesser Hajj.

 

The state Commissioner for Health, Dr Abba Zakari, who disclosed this to newsmen in Dutse said that the persons, that  included a four-year-old boy, were subjected to test after exhibiting symptoms related to the virus.

 

He also announced that the state  government had inaugurated an 18-member task-force that would be saddled with the responsibility of  educating the citizens on how they could curtail  COVID-19 pandemic in the state.

 

Edited By: Abiemwense Moru/Peter Dada
(NAN)

 

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COVID-19: NOA urges Nigerians to maintain social distance, hygiene

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The National Orientation Agency (NOA) has urged Nigerians to maintain “social distance’’ to curtail the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the country.

Mrs Priscilla Allu, the Director of NOA in Nasarawa State, gave the advice in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency on Friday in Lafia.

Allu said the call to maintain social distance had become imperative as part of measures to curtail further spread of the virus in the country.

According to her, “maintaining distance from friends and family members does not mean hatred or any negative feeling towards them but to prevent the spread of the virus.”

Allu noted that the information from affected countries and experts showed that personal and environmental hygiene alone were not enough to prevent the virus.

She said that the effort to curb further spread of the Coronavirus had become everybody’s business.

“People, especially from states that already have suspected  and confirmed cases of the virus must desist from handshake, hugging, and large gathering at the moment in their interests.

“They must

 improve on their personal and environmental hygiene and desist from spreading false rumour,’’ Allu said.

She urged the public to report any person exhibiting symptoms suspected to be of COVID-19 to the nearest response teams set up by the government for prompt action.

Edited By: Johnson Eyiangho and Isaac Ukpoju
(NAN)

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