The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 has revealed that 731 members of Batch B National Youths Service Corps (NYSC) have tested positive for COVID-19.
The chairman, PTF on COVID-19 and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, stated this at the national briefing on COVID-19 on Tuesday in Abuja.
According to him, in continuation of the NYSC engagement, the PTF has conducted the testing of batch B corps members using RDTs. Out of the 35,419 in the Batch B, 731 tested positive compared to the 108 recorded in Batch A.
“It is on record that cases were recorded from corps members from every state of the federation,” he said.
The PTF chairman said “there is also a rising rate of infections among healthcare workers and this calls for the escalation of surveillance.
“In Africa, Nigeria has joined South Africa in reporting the highest daily infection cases.
“As at date, the statistics for Nigeria shows the following: Cumulative cases: 91,351; Cumulative Tests: 958,911; Deaths: 1,318 and Week 53 recorded 57 deaths which is the highest for any single week since we started,” he said.
Mustapha further stated that “We are pleased to inform you that the private sector – CACOVID has commenced supporting our response with 100 oxygen cylinders per day, till the end of March, 2021, for distribution to critical care centres in Abuja.
” Furthermore, approval has been given to rehabilitate five oxygen plants across various tertiary health institutions in Abuja. The President has also approved that at least one oxygen plant should be established in each state of the federation immediately,” he said.
On vaccines, he stated that ” the PTF is progressing on the issue of accessing vaccines for Nigerians and that additional information would be provided to Nigerians on accelerated vaccines introduction and deployment plan.
“What is currently confronting us is a critical phase of infections globally. We are constantly reviewing our strategy to emerging situations especially in risk communication, vaccine hesitancy, fake news/disinformation,” he further said.
On sanctioning of defaulting passengers, the PTF said it “has commenced the sanctions on passengers who defaulted on day-7 post arrival tests.
“Their passport numbers have been published and travel restriction imposed for a period of six months effective from Jan. 1, 2021.
” The PTF has generated over 20,000 inbound passengers that have also defaulted. The publication will continue weekly till it is exhausted.
“Nigerians should be aware that every defaulter is a threat to public health which is unacceptable to us and represents a draw back to the National Response. We have a duty to advise our relations, friends, associates to comply with laid down rules,” he added.