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Third wave hits harder as 35 Ogun corps members test positive, 18 in Niger

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New data from the World Health Organisation (WHO), yesterday, showed that weekly COVID-19 deaths in Africa reached a record peak in the week that ended on August 1, marking the highest seven-day toll since the onset of the pandemic in the continent.

The data released during a virtual press conference facilitated by APO Group, showed over 6,400 deaths were recorded, a two per cent rise compared with the previous week, with South Africa and Tunisia accounting for over 55 per cent of the fatalities.

Death trends are on the rise in 15 countries, and 12 have reported higher case fatality rates than the African average of 2.5 per cent over the last month.

With more than 172,000 deaths, Africa accounts for over four per cent of the 4.2 million COVID-19-related deaths recorded globally to date.

New Vaccines Introduction Officer at WHO Regional Office for Africa, Dr. Phionah Atuhebwe, said: “It is a sad day for Africa. Our hearts go out to everyone who has lost friends and loved ones. Deaths have peaked week-on-week on the continent and after a slight dip, COVID-19 cases are surging again. The latest data tells us that Africa is still on the crest of the third wave, still recording more cases than in any earlier peak and that we cannot take anything for granted.”

According to the WHO, COVID-19 cases rose by 19 per cent to over 278,000 in the week ending on August 1. South Africa accounted for 29 per cent of the cases, which remain close to Africa’s record high of 286,000 weekly cases recorded in early July.

Twenty-two African countries have seen cases rise by over 20 per cent for at least two weeks running. The highly transmissible Delta variant has been found in 29 African countries, while the Alpha variant has been detected in 39 countries and the Beta variant in 35.

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In Nigeria, the third wave of the coronavirus pandemic has continued to ravage as the country on Wednesday night recorded four new deaths and 747 cases, ranking the highest daily infection figure in nearly six months. The last time the country confirmed cases above 747 was on February 18 when 877 cases were recorded.

According to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), the new infection figure has raised Nigeria’s total infection number to 176,011 while the fatality toll now stands at 2,167.

A breakdown of the NCDC data revealed that about a third of the daily infections in Nigeria on Wednesday was recorded in Lagos. The city, as the disease’ epicentre, reported 488 cases, while Akwa Ibom followed with 121 cases, and Oyo State ranked third with 29 cases. The NCDC added that Nigeria has tested over 2.5 million samples out of its estimated 200 million population.

With active cases in Nigeria jumping to 8,626, hospitals across the country will further be put under severe pressure as the ongoing strike by the National Association of Resident Doctors (NARD) lingers. The doctors strike began on Monday and its biting consequences are already taking a toll on Nigerians.

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PHOTOS: Fani-Kayode dines at residence of another Buhari’s Minister

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Since Thursday when his defection to the All Progressives Congress (APC) was made public, Femi Fan-Kayode, former Minister of Aviation, has been under fire.

From Social media to traditional media, the former critic of President Muhammadu Buhari and the ruling party, has been lampooned.

But FFK has waved critics aside, sharing pictures of his visit to the residences of key APC figures.

On Saturday, he released pictures of his visit to Ali Isa Pantami, Minister of Communication and Digital Economy, whom he had labelled a terrorist and asked Buhari to sack a few months ago.

While the dust raised by the post is yet to settle, Fani-Kayode released fresh pictures of his visit to the residence of George Akume, Minister of Special Duties.

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Armed gang invade Lagos streets, injure many, loot shops

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Mushin area of Lagos State was yesterday, thrown into commotion as some armed gang invaded some streets, inflicting injuries on residents and destroying property worth millions of naira.

It was gathered one person died in the mayhem that forced churches within the affected communities to close for fear of being attacked.

Information had it that a notorious armed robber was arrested sometime by the police and was transferred to Abuja. But his release was allegedly facilitated by some big shots he worked for.

After his release, his loyalists from the Idi-Araba area of the state reportedly invaded some areas of Mushin to attack some persons whom they accused of being the cause of his arrest. The areas affected were Alafia, Daniel and Morgan.

A resident, who simply gave his name as Mitchy, explained that “the fight has been going on since midnight (Saturday)and the perpetrators came from Idi-Araba. This has been happening for almost six months. But last night and today’s(Sunday) were the most violent.

“Surprisingly, the armed thugs were teenagers between 16 and 19 years. They looted people’s shops and carted away goods. They were armed with machetes, guns and bottles.

“Holy Trinity Anglican Church at Alafia junction and Christ Gospel Apostolic Church on Da-Silva street could not conduct Sunday service.”

It was gathered teams of policemen from the Tactical Unit of the Lagos State Police Command were ordered by the Commissioner of Police, CP Odumosu to contain the situation.

When contacted, the command spokesman, CSP Ade Ajisebutu, said 15 suspects had been arrested in connection with the clash. He said axes, cutlasses and expended cartridges were recovered in the process.

According to Ajisebutu, “Normalcy has returned to the area. CP Odumosu has assured residents to go about their lawful businesses. At the end of an investigation, the suspects will be charged to court.”

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Ondo Govt seals off Shoprite, popular market

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The Ondo State Government has sealed off Shoprite and the neighborhood market in Akure, the Ondo State capital.

The popular facilities were sealed on Monday by the Ondo State Waste Management Authority, ODSWMA, over what was described as unsanitary and unhygienic practices.

A few days ago, the agency had taken similar action against five notable buildings in the state for flouting the environmental laws of the state.

Shoprite, which is located on Igbatoro road in Akure and the Neighborhood market at NEPA axis of the State capital, were accused of ignoring a series of warnings from the agency.

The General Manager of the Authority Mrs Ayo Adeyemo, who disclosed this, said the owners of the affected facilities violated environmental laws and failed to comply with the laid down hygienic practices.

Adeyemo, who maintained that further sanctions would be taken, warned that anyone found culpable will not be spared

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