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Just in: Nigeria’s Omicron cases jump to 49 amid fourth wave

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has disclosed that no fewer than 49 persons have been confirmed to have contracted the fourth variant of the COVID-19, Omicron, across the country.

NCDC noted that some of the new patients never had any traveling record before they contracted the variant in the country.

The disease control agency linked the surge in the number of cases recorded between November and December 21st, 2021 to none adherence of Nigerians to the protocol put in place by the Presidential Steering Commission (PSC) on Coronavirus

These statistics were disclosed by the Director-General of the NCDC, Dr. Ifedayo Adetifa, during a virtual chat with newsmen on Friday, saying the country was yet to record any Omicron-related death.

Adetifa noted that the surge in Omicron cases was due to the influx of Nigerians foreign-based returning to the country to celebrate the yuletide season with their relatives in Nigeria.

According to him, the surge we are experiencing could also be traced to the influx of people into the country and the non-adherence to the protocol which was why we have been appealing to state governments to introduce protocols that can help mitigate the wave.

He noted that if everyone adhere strictly to the protocols, they would not only be protecting themselves but also their community including their loved ones from being infected by the virus.

Adetifa warned that the Omicron variant transmits faster than other variants, adding we all have to ensure that Nigeria leaves the league of COVID-19 embattled nations.

Earlier, Dr. Luka Lawal, a senior official at the NCDC, told newsmen that the increase in Omicron cases and other variants started during the 47th week of the year.

Lawal noted that these were discovered through aggressive testing in five major states including Lagos, Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja, Rivers, Delta, and Oyo states.

It would be recalled that Nigeria joined the league of nations battling with the new variant on December first after recording three cases from South African returnees into the country.

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