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COVID-19: PTF Chair embarrassed by Nigerians response to coronavirus as 1,002 dies from infection

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The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha

By Audrey Lotechukwu

MON, AUG 24 2020-theG&BJournal– The Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) reported additional 322 positive coronavirus cases on Sunday bringing the country’s total caseload to 52,227.

5 more deaths were recorded as COVID-19 related to take the country’s total number of fatalities to 1,002 while 38, 945 cases have been discharged and 378,023 samples tested.

The new caseload was reported from 18 states with Lagos topping the list with 130 confirmed cases bringing the State’s total to 17,894. The total number of cases in the FCT is now 4,994 after it reported additional 25 new cases on Sunday. Enugu State is the latest State to record above 1, 000 infections- now 1043 cases in total.

Oyo-3,050, (with the addition of  14 new cases), Edo-2,537 (after reporting 17 new cases), Plateau-2,118, Rivers -2,048, Kaduna -2,011, Kano (added 4 new cases to take its total -1,708), Delta 1,701, Ogun -1,614 and Ondo-1,512 remain the most ravaged States in the country.

The other States reporting new cases are Bayelsa-14, Anambra-13, Abia-10, Osun-6, Plateau-5, Kwara-5, Ebonyi-3, Sokoto-2 and Borno-1 State.

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha described the continued rate of infection as being of ‘concern’, and ripped the attitude and response of Nigerians to the virus.

‘’Our biggest challenge has been the attitude of Nigerians since we began coordinating the COVID-19 response,’’ Mustapha said during the PTF’s COVID-19 briefing last week in Abuja.

‘’Everything to fight COVID-19 has been placed at our disposal. We revised the 2020 budget all in an attempt to deal with the financial needs for fighting COVID-19.’’

He spoke to the huge support received locally and from countries across the world. He also pointed to the country’s capacity to test 15,000 a day. The PTF’s major challenge he said, has been the attitude of ‘’our people, otherwise we would have flattened the curve of this ravaging virus if we had just complied with the simple instructions.’’

‘’That is why we try as much as possible to get Nigerians to understand that this is about self preservation first-preserving your loved ones, family and the community and the preserving the nation.’’

He said, ‘’if Nigerians can muster a slight paradigm shift, a slight behavioral shift, and given the way we have been able to moderate our fatalities, the rate of community transmission that is on-going now would have been down.’’

He noted that the country’s hotspots began with 10 locations and progressed to 20 currently and some of the locations we have as the hotspots are not as easily accessible to medical care.

He believes that if the attitudinal challenge is overcome- which is the response as a people to the infection and the level of compliance upped, we will be able to have a hold on the pandemic until any form of cure or treatment surfaces.

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