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Zimbabwe Arrests 26,000 for Flouting COVID-19 Protocols

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Zimbabwe authorities arrested 26,000 people for allegedly flouting COVID-19 lockdown restrictions.

According to local media reports, Zimbabwean Police arrested 10,000 people over the last week for failing to wear face masks in public and 16,000 others for flouting lockdown restrictions aimed at curbing the spread of the disease.

The recent arrests bring the total number of people arrested since March 2020 for flouting lockdown regulations to 309 061.

Most of the offenders were ordered to pay $500 fine as an admission of guilt fine.

A hard lockdown came into force on 5 January after cases doubled last month because of festive season gatherings and traffic from neighbouring South Africa, which is experiencing a severe second wave of the virus.

Currently more than 9,000 people have Covid-19.

Jenfan Muswere, the Minister of ICT, Postal and Courier Services, told a press conference on Wednesday afternoon that Harare and Bulawayo continue to lead in both the number of new Covid-19 infections and deaths.

On Tuesday, 943 new cases and 23 deaths were recorded across the country with Harare recording 401 new infections.

“What is worrying is that within a week 9 993 people were arrested for not wearing masks and this points to negligence by some members of the society who are not taking this virus seriously and this calls for behavior change,” Muswere said.

“Whilst the virus might not kill offenders, it has a potential to affect the next person who is a loved one, a mother, a father, a colleague, a sister or a brother.

“As of 6th January 2021, a total of 309 061 arrests were made countrywide for flouting lockdown regulations, indicating an increase of 16 286, from the 292 775 recorded in the last briefing.

“It is evident that there is need for national discipline and self-prudence as we wage a war against this invisible enemy. We cannot afford to have a lackadaisical approach in this fight as it will annihilate us”.

Healthcare workers have been hit by shortages of adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) as the number of patients increases.

In total, there have been more than 34,000 Covid-19 cases and almost 600 deaths since the first case was detected in March.

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Lagos in Discussions to Provide Residents COVID-19 Vaccines – CJ

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Nigeria’s commercial city, Lagos State, has begun plans to make COVID-19 vaccines available for residents in the states.

The state’s Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Moyosore Onigbanjo (SAN), who disclosed the Lagos government has begun discussions with COVID-19 vaccines manufacturer, noted that move became necessary following rising cases of patients needing treatments urgently.

Onigbanjo also dismissed claims that the Lagos Government is incapable and unwilling to enforce compliance with COVID-19 protocols.

He said, “It is correct that Lagos State has the highest number of infections and sadly fatalities from COVID-19 in Nigeria. The State Government itself never shied away from admitting that Lagos is indeed the epicenter of the virus in Nigeria. But is it “business-as-usual”? Most certainly not.

“Since the first index patient was confirmed on 27 February 2020, Lagos State Government has led from the front in tackling the pandemic. It was Lagos State who also first introduced; reduced working hours for all sectors of the economy in the State; directed that all its staff between levels 1-14 should work from home; closed all bars, gyms, lounges and cinemas; restricted restaurants to offering take-out services only; and closed worship centres.

“The first lockdown, to contain the pandemic was declared in Lagos on March 30, 2020.

“The first fully equipped isolation centres sprang up in Lagos. At its peak the State had a total bed space of 600 reserved exclusively for COVID-19 patients. The State also led and still leads nationwide in administering COVID- 19 tests.

“As at date we are testing about 3000 persons a day from 60 public and 20 private Sample collection centres, spread out across 57 Local Government and Central Public Health Labs in the state.

“Thousands of people have been successfully treated and discharged from our isolation centres and home based care to date.

“When the second wave started, Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu (even while just recovering from being infected with the virus) addressed a press conference on 18 December 2020 and shut down, nightclubs, lounges, concerts and bars.

“A plan to construct three oxygen plants was launched and on the 8th of January 2021 the first installed oxygen plant was commissioned at Infectious Disease Hospital, Yaba. This is capable of producing 60 large cylinders a day of high grade medical oxygen.

“The state government is also currently discussing with vaccine manufacturers with a view to making vaccines available to Lagosians,” Onigbanjo concluded.

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Malawi Records 562 New COVID-19 Infections, 9 Deaths in 24 Hours

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562 people tested positive for coronavirus (COVID-19) disease in 24 hours nationwide, Malawi’s Presidential Task force has said.

The Presidential Task Force on CoVID-19 added that nine people died from the virus in the period.

Dr. John Phuka, the co-chairperson of the task force, said that 18 new recoveries were recorded.

According to him, hospital admissions are at the highest with at 167 in 18 hospitals across the country; Blantyre still as the highest at 71.

“We should not despair or lose hope as we can stop the spread of the disease if all of us act decisively and choose to adhere to the preventive measures,” Phuka said.

“I have observed that there is fear, worry, stress and anxiety among the public with how the disease is spreading. Let me point it out that these are expected responses to perceived or real threats, and at times when we are faced with uncertainty or the unknown.

“As such, it is expected that people are experiencing fear in the context of the Covid-19 pandemic. Added to the fear of contracting the virus in a pandemic such as Covid-19 are the significant changes to our daily lives in support of efforts to contain and slow down the spread of the virus.”

Malawi has so far confirmed about 10 000 coronavirus cases and 275 deaths – including two cabinet ministers.

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Nigeria Records 7 COVID-19 Deaths, 1,598 New Infections

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Nigeria’s health agency on Saturday night reported no fewer than 1,598 new cases of COVID-19, bringing total confirmed cases in the country to 108,943.

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) also reported seven deaths from complications related to the deadly virus.

The NCDC, on its official Twitter handle, said the total infections in the country is now 108,943 with 22,156 active cases and 1,420 fatalities.

The country has so far tested 1,147, 523 people since the first confirmed case of COVID-19 on February 27, 2020.

The Nigeria’s public health institute said that the new infections were reported from 23 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

It stated that Lagos state topped the list with 461 infections, FCT 206, Plateau 197, Rivers 167, Kaduna state-116, Anambra-53, Ogun-49, Ebonyi-47, Edo-42, Sokoto state-32 and Imo-31 cases.

Katsina state-31, Oyo state-30, Akwa Ibom-27, Delta-16, Kano state-16, Abia-15, Niger-15, Ondo-11, Bayelsa-10, Borno-9, Kebbi-8, Ekiti-7 and Jigawa-1 cases.

The agency further disclosed that 832 patients recovered and had been discharged from various isolation centres across the country.

It added that this indicated 85,367 recoveries from the total 108,943 infections.

According to it, discharges for Saturday includes 430 community recoveries in Lagos State managed in line with guidelines.

There is a drop in infections compared with Friday’s 1,867 cases, which is the highest so far in a single day.

Lagos state also recorded substantial drop in cases with 461 new infections far lesser than 713 cases reported on Friday.

The FCT’s 206 new cases represents a slight increase compared to the 199 cases on Friday.

Plateau state recorded a drop in infections with 197 cases against its Friday’s 273.

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