The Nigerian Medical Association (NMA) on Thursday said that the Nigerian Communications Commission’s fresh directive on the national identification number could lead to a spike in COVID-19 cases.
Advising Nigerians on gatherings at the NIN registration centres, the NMA President, Professor Innocent Uja in an interview with The PUNCH, said more people could be infected at the NIN centres if they disregarded safety protocols.
Uja said, “People and those officials should ensure strict compliance with the NCDC (Nigeria Centre Disease Control) protocols, such as social distancing and wearing of face masks. If people do not comply with the protocols, it may cause another wave.”
According to the figure released by the NCDC 5,809 cases were recorded in the country between December 7 and 16, 2020.
On December 7, the country recorded 390 cases; 550 cases on December 8; 474 cases on December 9; 675 cases on December 10 and 796 cases on December 11.
The country also recorded 617 cases on December 12; 418 cases on December 13; 201 cases on December 14; 758 cases on December 15 as well as 930 cases on December 16.
Lagos State and the Federal Capital Territory, have, however, recorded more confirmed COVID-19 than other states. While FCT had recorded 1,629 cases in 10 days, Lagos had recorded 1,586 cases.
Also expressing concern, Professor Olufemi Olaleye of the Department of Virology, University of Ibadan, said the risk of spread of COVID-19 could increase as a result of large crowds at the NIN centres across the country.
Giving a response on the possibility of a spike in cases, the don said, “Yes, indeed, there is the possibility of a super spreading situation if mouth/nose coverings are not used just at large gathering without appropriate precautionary measures against the spread of COVID-19 virus.”
The Federal Government on Thursday confirmed that Nigeria had entered the second wave of coronavirus infections, with a warning about the risk of losing the gains from the hard work of the last nine months and likely casualties.
The acting Chairman of the PTF and Minister of Aviation, Hadi Sirika, stated this during a press conference in Abuja.
Sirika stood in for the Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the PTF, Boss Mustapha, who went on self-isolation, after some members of his family tested positive for coronavirus.