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Japan Promises Nigeria More Support In Health Sector2 minutes read



Japan has pledged to sustain its support for Nigeria especially in the health sector towards the development of the country.

Mr Kikuta Yutaka, Japanese Ambassador to Nigeria said this on Sunday in Abuja.

Yutaka was reacting to the Aug. 25, declaration of Nigeria as a polio free nation by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

He said that the eradication of polio from the country followed collective efforts by the Federal Government and the international community.

“I would like to congratulate all the relevant agencies and the people. However, I, also have to leave a cautious note that this is not yet the end of the game,” Yutaka said.

He said that Japan played a pivotal role by supporting Nigeria to attain the wild polio virus-free status through a series of assistance aimed at eradicating the virus.

Yutaka said some of the assistance was channelled through the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).

“The Government of Japan’s support to Nigeria on polio eradication began in 2000 with a grant to procure Oral Polio Vaccines and to establish a cold chain. The total amount for this project was $73.6m.

“The ODA loan agreement in 2014 in which the Government of Japan provided $75.5m for polio eradication projects in Nigeria.

“The Government of Japan also provided $33.3m to UNICEF for emergency polio eradication programmes in Nigeria and the Lake Chad region.

“In addition, the Government of Japan, through technical cooperation assistance, provided equipment to two Nigerian national polio laboratories that are members of the WHO inspection network,” he said.

According to him, apart from polio assistance, Japan also donated thermography, currently being used in airports in Nigeria, with the initial purpose of preventing the Ebola virus from entering the country.

“Our government also delivered at least one Japanese ambulance to every state of Nigeria and the FCT, which are now playing crucial role in transporting patients with COVID-19, and other diseases.

“I, as the Japanese Ambassador to Nigeria, signed the exchange of notes twice for the projects to strengthen the capacity of Nigeria Center for Disease Control(NCDC) and its network of laboratories.

“The Japanese Government also supports the improvement of the health care system through international organisations.

“I am also pleased that Prof. Isaac Folorunso Adewole, former Minister of Health, has been selected as 2020 recipient of The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Star, one of the highest orders awarded in the name of His Majesty the Emperor of Japan,” he said.

He said that the award was decided in recognition of Adewole’s contributions towards strengthening bilateral relations between Japan and Nigeria, especially in the health sector.

“I would like to express my sincere congratulations to Adewole for receiving this Order,” he said.

The ambassador said that Japan would continue to work with the Nigerian people to improve the health sector.

“The Embassy of Japan hopes that this kind of assistance will further strengthen the amicable relationship between Japan and Nigeria,” he said.

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East Africa News

COVID-19: Rwanda makes EU “safe list”

The move follows a review under the recommendation on the gradual lifting of the temporary restrictions on non-essential travel into the EU.

Bernard Akede



the European Union

According to a statement from the European Union Council on October 22, Rwanda has been listed by the European Union, among the countries on which Covid-19 travel restrictions into the EU territory should be gradually lifted.

The move follows a review under the recommendation on the gradual lifting of the temporary restrictions on non-essential travel into the EU.

Some of the criteria which the European Union considers for lifting travel restrictions on third countries (countries that are not members of the EU as well as countries whose citizens do not enjoy the European Union right to free movement) include their epidemiological situation and containment measures, including physical distancing, as well as economic and social considerations.

Some of the other countries from which the restrictions have been lifted are Singapore, South Korea, Australia, Japan, Uruguay, Thailand, and New Zealand.

This now means that Rwanda is the only country in African to feature on the list.

The EU Council’s statement, however, indicates that this list will continue to be reviewed regularly and, as the case may be, updated.

In addition, the statement also says that European Union Council recommendation is not a legally binding instrument.

To this end, the authorities of the member states are responsible for  implementing the content of the recommendation, where they may, in full transparency, lift only progressively travel restrictions towards the listed countries.

In the past few weeks, Rwanda has been reporting progress in the fight against Covid-19. As of today, Rwanda has recorded a total of 5,062 cases of which 4,806 have recovered and 34 have died.

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Five Soldiers, Four Others Die In IPOB, Security Operatives Clash In Nigeria’s Rivers



No fewer than nine people have died in Nigeria’s Rivers State during a clash between security operatives and the proscribed Indigenous People of Biafra (IPOB).

The clash, which occurred at Oyigbo and other parts of the state, was said to have claimed the lives of five soldiers and four IPOB members.

The soldiers were part of a joint security team – which included some policemen – deployed to quell IPOB activities in Oyigbo, Rumuokwurusi and other flashpoints areas.

The IPOB members were said to have engaged the security team in a shoot-out from Thursday night till Friday morning.

Rivers State Governor, Mr Nyesom Wike, had on Friday condemned IPOB activities despite the 24-hour curfew imposed on the Oyigbo council area.

“We were all witnesses to yet another orgy of violence and destruction inflicted by IPOB at Oyigbo Local Government Area and some parts of Port Harcourt City Local Government Area on Tuesday, October 20, 2020,” the governor said, adding: “This evil, wicked and audacious action resulted in the unnecessary loss of lives, including soldiers and police officers, and the destruction of both public and private properties, police stations, court buildings and business premises.”

Meanwhile, the state police command said two cops were killed, four police stations burnt and over 50 vehicles set ablaze by suspected IPOB members who attacked the Oyigbo community and other areas in the state.

The state Commissioner of Police, Joseph Mukan, stated this when he led commanders of other security agencies in the state to the Oyigbo council area on Saturday.

In a statement by the spokesman for the state police command, Nnamdi Omoni, the CP had ordered a full scale investigation into the incident with a view to appending and prosecuting the culprits.

The statement stated, “The Rivers State Commissioner of Police, Joseph Mukan today (Saturday) led commanders of the sister security agencies in the state to Oyigbo council area where hoodlums suspected to be members of the proscribed IPOB under the guise of #EndSARS protests invaded Oyigbo Area Command, Oyigbo, Afam and Umuebulu Police stations where they attacked the policemen on duty and burnt down the four police formations.

“In the course of the attacks, over 50 vehicles were burnt, including one Armoured Personnel Carrier, killing two policemen who were hacked to death and set ablaze.”

Mukan condemned the attack on public and private property, describing it as ‘ill-conceived, most unfortunate and an ill wind that would blow no one any good,’ while condoling with the families of the slain operatives.

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Mob Drags Kenyan Man From Hospital Bed, Lynches Him For Allegedly Stealing Motorcycles



A Kenyan man has allegedly been lynched for allegedly stealing motorcyles.

According to local reports, the mob had on Saturday stormed the Kimbimbi Sub-county hospital in Kirinyaga area of the East African country, dragged the man from his hospital bed, killed and set his remains on fire.

Kirinyaga East DCIO, Millicent Ochuka said the deceased was “suspected to be behind the theft of five motorcycles”.

He was undergoing treatment at the hospital after he sustained serious injuries from a mob beating on Thursday night for the alleged theft.

“What we have gathered is that he was beaten then compelled to confess to bodaboda riders on where he hid the stolen bikes,” said the area DCIO.

“He was later freed and taken to hospital for treatment.”

The riders regrouped the following day (Friday) after failing to find the bikes from the hideout they had been directed to and returned to the hospital to abduct the suspect.

Ochuka believes the assailants overpowered the hospital’s security guards and carried off the patient out for lynching.

She however said the hospital has not reported to police on the patient’s abduction.

“We will seek information from the hospital to establish if indeed he (suspect) was forcefully taken from the facility so we can get his identity,” said the DCIO.

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