The Lagos and Osun state governments have threatened new closures amidst the increasing number of 19 cases in the states and the country.
New 684 COVID-19 cases were registered on Friday by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control in 18 states and the Federal Capital Territory, bringing the total number of cases to 23,298.
While 8,253 discharged patients recovered, 554 deaths were registered.
Lagos, Oyo and Katsina had the highest case numbers with 259, 76 and 69 cases, respectively. Delta, Rivers had 46, Ogun 23, Edo 22, Osun 22 and Ebonyi 21.
The FCT had 20, Kaduna 16, Ondo 10, Imo 9 and Abia 9, Gombe 5, Plateau 4, Bauchi 4, Ekiti 2 and Anambra 1.
Due to the daily increase in the number of cases, the governments of Lagos and Osun threatened with renewed closures if the population did not adhere to government protocols such as social distancing and the wearing of face masks in public.
At a media briefing, Lagos State Health Commissioner Prof. Akin Abayomi said that the government would not hesitate to impose further closures if things (cases) got out of control, even though the state had been able to strike a balance between the public health crisis and ensuring livelihoods.
“We believe that we are creating a delicate balance between the public health crisis and the economic livelihood of the Lagosians. If things get out of hand, we will certainly consider another lockdown,” he said.
The Commissioner added that the state had not yet peaked, noting that cases would continue to rise in the next month or two.
Abayomi said: “We are in the middle of the outbreak and we have not even reached the peak, so cases are still rising. We expect many more cases in the next month or two. I want to use this platform to remind the people of Lagos that we have not yet reached the peak and Lagos is still going through the active transmission of Covid-19 by the community.
“I think what may give you a false sense of security or confidence is that we say most people have a mild to moderate disease. That may be true, but between three and five percent of Lagosians infected with this infection have an extremely severe to a critical form of Covid-19, and the risk of dying at this percentage is extremely high.
“Two to five per cent may seem like a small percentage, but even one per cent of 25 million people is a lot of Lagosians. We are not prepared to lose 250,000 Lagosians, and we certainly won’t even consider that figure.
“Therefore, I appeal to the Lagosians, especially to those people who, in our opinion, fall into the category of those at risk; any person over 50 or 55 years of age with underlying medical conditions such as high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, or any other disease that compromises his or her immune system is extremely susceptible to Covid-19.
“And the young people may go out with mild to moderate disease, but they definitely go home in the evening and expose their parents and grandparents to the vulnerability.
“I, therefore, appeal to the Lagosians to continue to practice the socially distancing practices and I hope that these practices will help to flatten the curve and protect certain vulnerable members of the community.
Mr Abayomi stated that the local authorities of the areas with the most cases are Eti-Osa, Alimosho, Kosofe, Ikeja, Oshodi, Surulere and Lagos mainland.
As new cases were reported daily, the Osun State Government said on Friday that it might impose further closures.
The state’s health commissioner, Dr Rafiu Isamotu, said in a statement that residents continued to disregard government guidelines.
“On Thursday we announced the discovery of 17 new cases in our beloved state. Unfortunately today (Friday) we have 22 new cases again. Considering where we come from, this is worrying. We must, therefore, take responsibility. The fight against the coronavirus is not over yet.
“The government could be forced to impose a further lockdown if residents and citizens continue to ignore the relaxation guidelines for the lockdown.