Three more persons died from COVID-19 and 565 new cases were confirmed in Nigeria on Friday, as the country continues its race to contain the third wave of the pandemic.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control said the new were spread across 17 states with Lagos accounting for most of them, followed by Rivers.
Lagos, the epicentre of the pandemic in Nigeria, recorded 348 cases, almost five times more than the 70 fresh cases confirmed for Rivers.
Akwa Ibom, where at least 19 Delta Variant cases have been confirmed, reported 45 new cases with Oyo State and the Federal Capital Territory recording 36 and 24 cases, respectively.
Other states with new cases are Ekiti (15), Kwara (7), Ogun (7), Gombe (3), Anambra (2), Kaduna (2), Bayelsa (1), Cross River (1), Edo (1), Plateau (1), Kano (1), and Sokoto (1).
The new cases take Nigeria’s total confirmed cases to 177,142. In all, 165,409 of those infected have recovered, while 2,181 people have died.
Globally, more than 200 million cases of the pandemic have been confirmed with the death toll topping four million.
A third wave of the pandemic, spurred by the more infectious Delta variant, has limited efforts by governments across the world to ease restrictions and boost economic activities which were grounded for the most part of last year. It has also hurt the global vaccination drive with the efficacy of some vaccines less when it comes to the variant.
The resurgence of the pandemic has been more pronounced in the Asia-Pacific region where Thailand, Indonesia and Japan continued to see new records and the city of Melbourne entered yet another lockdown.
Nigeria has, fortunately, continued to witness a low fatality rate, a development noted by experts.
On Thursday, the World Health Organisation’s Country Representative for Nigeria, Dr Walter Kazadi, said the country’s fatality rate, which he put at 1.3 percent, was encouraging.
Dr Kazadi commented on the country’s efforts in Abuja when he presented 26 ventilators and other items donated by WHO to Nigeria. At 1.3 percent, the fatality rate is less than half the regional average.
But the Federal Government, health authorities and experts remain concerned about the third wave of the pandemic, especially the Delta strain, which has been detected in five states and the FCT already.
Their concerns are largely based on widespread COVID-19 protocol violations by citizens. The ongoing strike by resident doctors in the country has also increased concerns about personnel to combat the pandemic and other ailments in the country.