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Sanwo-Olu calls for calm as Lagos slips into third wave of COVID-19

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Lagos working with Fed Govt on schools reopening

Lagos, the epicenter of Coronavirus in Nigeria, has slipped into the third wave of the deadly virus.

Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu announced this at a press briefing in Lagos on Sunday.

He said the state will do everything possible to prevent a massive outbreak, threatening imprisonment of travellers who fail to release number through which they can be contacted.

“Fellow Lagosians, It has become imperative to once again provide you an update on the Coronavirus pandemic situation in Lagos State, and our ongoing response as a State Government.”

“Starting around the end of March 2021, the second wave of the COVID19 pandemic in Lagos State began to wind down, and we began to enjoy some reprieve from the worst effects of the virus.

“This allowed us to further open-up the economy to allow the start of the journey towards full normalcy in our lives and the pursuit of livelihoods, after what has been a very difficult year.

“Regrettably, in spite of the hard work and dedicated efforts towards sustaining the return to normalcy, over the last three months, we are now finding ourselves at what appears to be the start of a potential 3rd wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, in Lagos State,” the governor said.

Sanwo-Olu charged residents to comply with COVID-19 protocols, saying “Nigeria is counting on us in Lagos State to be resolute in our stand against the virus.”

“We will continue to test aggressively. We will also focus on sequencing the samples we are collecting to ensure we are detecting and keeping track of the different variants in circulation. It is only by testing and sequencing comprehensively that we can collect the data required for informed decision-making.

He also asked Lagosians to desist from patronising non-accredited COVID-19 treatment centers.

Vaccine is a major strategy against COVID

“Vaccine Distribution and Access One of the major tenets of our mitigation strategy against the 3rd wave is our vaccination campaign, similar to other parts of the world.

“It has been observed by various credible studies that those that have received their 4 vaccines have demonstrated significant resistance to the effects of the virus, with fewer associated complications and deaths.

“As of today, however, the percentage of residents of Lagos who have received two (2) doses of the vaccine stands at a mere 1%. We recognise that this is not adequate, and given the imminent third wave, and our priority to reduce COVID-19 related deaths, we are exploring all avenues possible to ramp up access to vaccination so as to reach our herd immunity target of at least 60% COVID-19 vaccination coverage of the population of Lagos State.”

Travel protocols

“Travel Protocols for in-Bound Passengers Between 8th May 2021 and 7th July 2021, a total of 50,322 passengers of interest arrived in Lagos via the Murtala Mohammed Airport. Of the 50,322 passengers, 18 percent could not be reached by EKOTELEMED because of the provision of either wrong numbers or wrong Nigerian contact details to be reached on. It is the responsibility of passengers to ensure they provide the right details for us to reach them for proper monitoring. Going forward, passengers that do not provide the right details, including a phone number they can be reached for monitoring and an address for isolation, 5 will face serious sanctions including fines and imprisonment according to our Lagos State Coronavirus Law of 2021.

“Religious Activities Greater vigilance is required at this time in our Churches and Mosques and other places of religious worship. Even as we are pleased that religious houses are now open for worship, after the lengthy closures of 6 2020, we must not allow ourselves to be carried away by the illusion that all is now back to normal. This is especially critical, as Sallah approaches, in a little over a week from now. The festivities will no doubt bring people together in large numbers and create conditions that can sadly cause the spread of the Coronavirus.

“After almost 18 months of daily confronting this virus, it is understandable that many are tired and want their old, pre-pandemic 7 lives to return. Unfortunately, we do not have a choice in this regard, and fatigue is not an option. We cannot afford to be tired, frustrated or distracted. The enemy is formidable – and opportunistic. It will only go as far as we allow it. Having triumphed over the first and second waves of the pandemic, we must now find within ourselves new reserves of energy to quell this emerging third wave before it snowballs out of control.”

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Former Ogun First Lady celebrates 96th birthday

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Mama Lucy Onabanjo, wife of the first civilian Governor of Ogun State, the late Chief Victor Olabisi Onabanjo (Aiyekooto) celebrated her 96th birthday on Tuesday.

Lucy Onabanjo is the oldest surviving former first lady.

Born in Ijebu Ode on October 26, 1925, Mama Onabanjo was trained as a teacher.

It was after her training as a teacher that Lucy started dating the Late Bisi, who was working with a local newspaper called Gaskiya Tarfi Kobo (Truth is more than a Kobo).

Few months after meeting Bisi , she walked down the aisle and said “I do.”

The humble ceremony would blossom into a life of civil service from teaching to the Government House, Abeokuta and beyond.

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It’s illegal to pay petrol subsidy from federation account, Sanusi tells FG

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Former Emir of Kano, Alhaji Muhammad Sanusi II, has said the federal government is indulging in illegality by paying petroleum subsidy from the federation account.

The former Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) governor spoke virtually as a panelist on Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at the just concluded Nigerian Economic Summit held in Abuja.

He also said the Nigerian daily oil consumption data is suspect thus there is endemic corruption in fuel subsidy payments.

“This money coming from petrol belongs to the federation account, and the federal government doesn’t have the constitutional right to pay subsidy on behalf of the federation.

“So it is a fundamental constitutional issue because this is money that should go to the federal, states and local governments. Yet money that belongs to the federation is carried out as federal government expenditure. So, there are so many complex issues, legal and economic issues. We need to stop these issues” he said.

He also advocated for the end of fuel subsidy and electricity subsidy, saying the money saved should be invested in critical sectors like education and health adding that the long-term gains far outweigh the short-term pains.

“I have said this before even as a CBN Governor under the previous government. What I say is not of a particular government. Take petroleum subsidy.

“In 2015 or 2016, Minister Ibe Kachukwu said Nigerian was importing 30 million litres of PMS per day after eliminating corruption. In 2019, the NNPC said we are importing 59 million litres per day after oil prices have gone up. And I have been asking the question, what happened between 2015 and 2019 that our oil consumption has almost double?” he asked.

He noted that “this is what also happened under the previous government. When oil prices go up, NNPC said they are importing more because of the arbitrage. Thus, when the oil prices go high, there is an incentive to inflate the number” he noted.

On electricity tariff, he said it should also be stopped as even poorer countries are paying cost reflective tariffs and enjoying uninterrupted electricity.

The Chairman, the Nigerian Governors Forum and the Governor of Ekiti State, Mr. Kayode Fayemi, also agreed that subsidy payments had to end for resources to be free up for critical investments.

He also said that the government must focus on education and healthcare provision.

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PHOTOS: South-west govs visit Tinubu

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