Coronavirus: Lagos begins door-to-door search (DailyTrust)
As the number of confirmed positive cases of the novel coronavirus rises in Lagos state, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu on Thursday said the State Government would commence a door-to-door search tagged: ‘Active Case Search’. The governor, who disclosed this on his official Twitter handle @jidesanwoolu, stated that in the coming days, some health workers will be moving around in pairs to administer an electronic questionnaire at homes and healthcare facilities to make enquiries about some symptoms like cough, cold and fever. This, he said, is necessary bid to intensify the search for possible cases of COVID-19 in different communities across the State. “These officials can be identified with a COVID-19 outbreak response tag or a letter from the LGA,” he said. Read more
Police arraigns 202 stay-at-home order violators in Lagos (Guardian)
Police authorities in Lagos on Thursday arrested 202 persons for violating the stay at home order to curb the spread of coronavirus.
“The suspects were arrested playing football on major streets and having group exercise in large number, which negate the principles of social distancing,” police spokesman in Lagos Bala Elkana said in a statement.
Elkana said the violators were arrested at Iju, Sabo, Ikeja, Itire, Ikotun, Ogudu, Akinpelu, Maroko, Alapere, Anthony, Orile, Owode Onirin and Ilemba Hausa areas. Read more
Lagos discharges seven coronavirus patients (Vanguard)
Nigeria has discharged seven Coronavirus patients from the Isolation Centre in Lagos, bringing the total number of discharged coronavirus patients to 51 in the country.
While total number of discharged patients in Lagos is now 39.
A breakdown of the patients according to Lagos State Ministry of Health shows 1 female & 6 males (including 2 Ukrainian & 1 Italian) all discharged from Mainland Infectious Disease Hospital after testing negative twice consecutively.
The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu who made the announcement on his Twitter handle on Thursday said “Good people of Lagos, Read more
NNPC assures of availability of petroleum products (Guardian)
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) has assured Nigerians of availability of sufficient petroleum products to ensure hitch-free Easter celebrations.
The NNPC Group General Manager, Group Public Affairs Division, Dr Kennie Obateru, gave this assurance in a statement issued on Wednesday in Lagos.
Obateru quoted the Managing Director of Petroleum Products Marketing Company (PPMC), Mr Musa Lawan, as saying that although there were restrictions of movement in some parts of the country, PPMC had maintained steady supply of petroleum products nationwide.
Lawan added that the company had enough products in its marine and land depots that could last another two months. Read more
Easter: Keep enforcing lockdown order, IG tells FCT, Lagos, Ogun CPs (Punch)
The Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, has directed the command Commissioners of Police in charge of the Federal Capital Territory, Lagos and Ogun States to continue enforcing the lockdown order imposed by the Federal Government to contain the COVID-19 disease.
He also called on religious leaders in the FCT, Lagos, Ogun and other states affected by the restrictions, to continue to cooperate with relevant government agencies.
The IG asked them to use their leadership positions to encourage worshippers to observe prayers and fellowship programmes in the confines of their homes. Read more
COVID-19: Buhari orders release of 2,600 prison inmates (Vanguard)
President Muhammadu Buhari has granted pardon and clemency to 2, 600 inmates of the Custodial Centres of the Nigeria Correctional Service (NCoS) as part of measures to control the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in the country.
Interior minister, Ogbeni Rauf Aregbesola disclosed this Thursday in Abuja.
While 70 of the inmates would be released in Abuja, the rest are expected to be released by the state governors after convening a meeting of their individual committee on Prerogative of Mercy. Read more
FG set to legalise modular Refineries – Sen Enang (Guardian)
Sen. Ita Enang, the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Niger Delta Affairs, has said that the Federal Government was planning to legalise Modular Refineries in the country.
Enang made this known when he featured on a News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Forum on Thursday in Abuja.
He said that his office had, over a period of time, engaged some artisanal (illegal) oil refiners in the Niger Delta region and had seen the need to legalise their operations. Read more
Bandits kidnap corpse, 15 others in Kaduna (Vanguard)
Bandits kidnapped a corpse and about 15 peasants in Kaduna State, along the dreaded Kaduna-Birnin Gwari Road on Wednesday, with one killed.
The victims, who were on their way to the burial of Malam Yahuza mai Hula, mainly family members, ran into the bandits who laid siege on the notorious Birnin-Gwari Road that connects Kaduna and Niger states.
The Police Public Relations Officer, PPRO, in Kaduna State, ASP Muhammad Jalige, told journalists that the Command was yet to be briefed on the incident by the Divisional Police Officer, DPO, in charge of the area where the bandits struck. Read more
Kaduna threatens 14-day quarantine for travellers into state (Punch)
The Kaduna State Government on Wednesday warned travellers into the state against violating the stay-at-home order imposed to tackle the spread of coronavirus.
According to the government, no traveller is allowed into the state during curfew hours.
The Commissioner for Internal Security and Home Affairs, Mr Samuel Aruwan, who gave the warning said any traveller who breached the l order risked being quarantined in its isolation facility for 14 days. Read more
Coronavirus: Christians face lockdown for Easter (BBC)
Europe’s Christians are facing an extraordinary Easter under lockdown, with traditionally large congregations replaced by livestreamed services.
On Friday the Vatican will livestream Pope Francis’s celebration of the Passion in St Peter’s Basilica and prayer of the Stations of the Cross.
Portugal has not been hit as badly as Spain and Italy by coronavirus, but has now ordered people to stay at home, with police roadblocks to cut travel.
Poland has also imposed strict curbs. Read more
Scientists snap highest ever resolution picture of the sun (Metro)
British researchers have collaborated with Nasa to capture the highest-ever resolution images of the sun. The images, analysed by researchers at the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) and collaborators from Nasa’s Marshall Space Flight Centre, provide astronomers with a better understanding of the sun’s complex atmosphere. Until now, certain parts of the Sun’s atmosphere had appeared dark or mostly empty. However the new images have revealed it actually contains strands of hot electrified gases that are around 500km (311 miles) in width. Read more
Coronavirus: Spain PM sees ‘fire coming under control’ (BBC)
Spain is close to passing the worst of its coronavirus outbreak, the prime minister said, as parliament debated extending the national state of emergency.
“The fire starts to come under control,” PM Pedro Sánchez told MPs in Madrid, saying the country would have “total victory” over the virus.
Spain has Europe’s highest number of confirmed cases, with 152,446.
As of Thursday, the country has reported 15,238 deaths. Read more
US records nearly 2,000 coronavirus deaths in one day (Punch)
The United States recorded nearly 2,000 novel coronavirus deaths for the second day in a row, according to a tally by Johns Hopkins University as of 8:30 pm Wednesday (0030 GMT Thursday).
The record-breaking figure of 1,973 deaths (slightly higher than the previous day’s toll of 1,939) brings the total number of US fatalities to 14,695. The US death toll now exceeds that of Spain, which has suffered 14,555 deaths, but has not surpassed Italy, whose toll stands at 17,669. Read more
Jobless claims surge past 16 million as coronavirus hammers US economy (France24)
The number of Americans seeking unemployment benefits in the last three weeks has blown past 16 million, with weekly new claims topping 6 million for the second straight time last week amid tough measures to control the novel coronavirus outbreak that have abruptly ground the country to a halt.
Thursday’s weekly jobless claims report from the Labor Department, the most timely data on the economy’s health, strengthens economists’ expectations of job losses of up to 20 million in April and their conviction that the economy is in deep recession. The government reported last Friday that the economy purged 701,000 jobs in March. That was the most job losses since the Great Recession and ended the longest employment boom in U.S. history that started in late 2010. Read more
Coronavirus fuels a surge in fake medicines (BBC)
Growing numbers of fake medicines linked to coronavirus are on sale in developing countries, the World Health Organization (WHO) has warned.
A BBC News investigation found fake drugs for sale in Africa, with counterfeiters exploiting growing gaps in the market.
The WHO said taking these drugs could have “serious side effects”.
One expert warned of “a parallel pandemic, of substandard and falsified products”. Read more
Critics raise privacy concerns as France considers digital tracking to battle coronavirus (France24)
In France and elsewhere, governments are looking at the use of apps to track citizens through their smartphones as part of efforts to stem the spread of the coronavirus. But critics worry that once such tracking systems are in place, governments may be tempted to use them for something else.
In the mind of France’s Interior Minister, Christophe Castaner, there is no question: If an application can help fight the Covid-19 pandemic in France by alerting smartphone users that they have been close to a sick person, it should be used.
Castaner said it is essential that the government use all the information available to it to curb the epidemic. “Tracking is one of the solutions that have been adopted by a number of countries, so we have decided to work with them in looking at these options,” he said in an interview with France 2 television on April 5. “I am convinced that if
allow us to fight the virus and if they do not infringe on individual liberties, tracking is a tool that will be accepted by the French people.” Read more
Chinese football clubs to cut salaries over coronavirus (Guardian)
Chinese football clubs look set to become the latest to cut player salaries as teams throughout world football attempt to offset the financial blow of the coronavirus pandemic.
Lionel Messi’s Barcelona and Cristiano Ronaldo’s Juventus have both made similar moves, while Real Madrid players agreed to reduce their pay by as much as a fifth.
Players in the Chinese Super League (CSL), which has sprung to prominence by giving world-leading wages to foreign stars, were under growing pressure to follow suit. Read more
LeBron James hopes Lakers can eventually rekindle their revival season (Vanguard)
LeBron James says the abrupt shutdown of the NBA season due to the worldwide coronavirus pandemic has left the Los Angeles Lakers feeling like they still have something to prove.
The Lakers were in the midst of a revival season, having made the playoffs for the first time in seven years, when the league suspended the 2019-20 season on March 11 after Rudy Gobert tested positive for COVID-19.
At the time of the postponement, the Lakers were in first place in the Western Conference and had the second-best record in the league behind Milwaukee. If the season doesn’t resume, James says there will be a void. Read more
Premier League clubs to receive millions of pounds in advanced payments (BBC)
Premier League clubs will receive millions of pounds in advanced payments related to league positioning and television fees in an effort to ease their cash-flow problems.
The 20 clubs agreed to the funding to cope with the lack of income because of the coronavirus crisis, with payments expected to be in the region of £20m.
The partial release of “merit payments” is prize money that clubs would have received, while “facility fees” relate to how many matches each club had shown on live TV matches. Read more
Mikel Arteta sends heartfelt message to Pep Guardiola after his mother’s death from coronavirus (Metro)
Arsenal boss Mikel Arteta has extended his sympathies to close friend Pep Guardiola after the Manchester City boss lost his mother earlier this week. Manchester City confirmed on Monday that Dolors Sala, 82, had passed away after she contracted coronavirus. Spain is the second worst affected country in Europe behind Italy from the disease and Guardiola had already donated £900,000 to his homeland in the battle to combat the disease. Unfortunately his 82-year-old mother is one of 15,238 deaths in the country, which has nearly 1.5million cases worldwide. Read more
Coronavirus: Formula 1 could begin championship in October (BBC)
Formula 1 could still hold a world championship this year even if the season cannot start until October, managing director Ross Brawn says.
Brawn said F1 was looking at closed-door races as a way to start the season once the coronavirus crisis eases and “every permutation is being discussed”.
F1 must run eight races for a season to be classed as a world championship. Read more
France’s football World Cup champions rally behind country’s health workers (France24)
France’s national football team have expressed their gratitude to health workers risking their lives to treat those infected with the novel coronavirus, releasing a video to applaud their efforts on the front line.
France is one of the worst affected countries in the world with over 82,000 cases of the novel coronavirus and almost 9,000 deaths.
With the world champions’ players in lockdown in their respective homes, the French Football Federation (FFF) made a compilation of the individual video messages from players and coaches to thank nursing staff at various hospitals in France. Read more
Southampton first Premier League club to defer players’ wages (Guardian)
Southampton on Thursday became the first Premier League club to defer players’ wages as a senior official for their union insisted they were doing their bit for the nation during the coronavirus pandemic.
Southampton’s players, manager Ralph Hasenhuttl, his staff and the club’s directors will defer their salaries for April, May and June.
The club said the measure would “help protect the future of the club, the staff that work within it and the community we serve”. Read more