COVID-19: Residents fault Sanwo-Olu’s stimulus package (DailyTrust)
Some Lagos State residents have faulted the distribution pattern of the stimulus package Governor Babajide Olushola Sanwo-Olu announced, saying it is not reaching the people it is intended for. The residents expressed disappointment on the quantity of the items contained in the package, labelled ‘Lagos State Government COVID-19 Emergency Food Response’, which they argued negated what the governor promised. They also accused those distributing the package of bias. It was gathered that some Community Development Associations (CDA) leaders got only a few packages that cannot go round the houses/families in the community and consequently refused to distribute the items in order to prevent confusion and quarrel among the people. The Lagos State government had unveiled an economic stimulus package for the indigent and most vulnerable people in the state to cushion the effects of the 14-day stay-at-home directive occasioned by the spread of the dreaded coronavirus disease in the state. Read more
Lagos discharges four coronavirus patients (Punch)
The Lagos State Government has discharged four coronavirus patients, bringing the total number of discharged persons in the state to 23.
Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, disclosed this at a news conference on Friday.
The state had earlier discharged 19 patients.
Confirming the development, Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos tweeted, “More great news from our Infectious Disease Hospital as four patients – three females and one male have recovered fully, tested negative twice and have been discharged.
“This gives us a lot of hope as we continue to listen to our health experts and provide the resources to beat COVID-19.” Read more
7 nabbed over attack on traders at Ikorodu (DailyTrust)
The Lagos State Police Command says it has arrested seven suspected armed robbers and cultists for allegedly attacking traders and passers-by at Itupate, Ikorodu. The suspects, according to the police, were believed to be members of the dreaded Aiye cult gang that had been involved in many robbery attacks in the area. Among those arrested are two teenage girls the police described as the gang armourers. Those arrested were identified as Seun Opanusi, 25; Ahmed Tajudeen, 21; Emmanuel Olowu, 18; Jimoh Balikis, 18; Mariam Owolabi, 18; Ayomide Omotosho, 18; and Rabiu Suleiman, 18. Read more
Eti-Osa LGA has highest confirmed COVID-19 cases in Lagos – Commissioner (Nation)
The Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, says Eti-Osa Local Government Area has the highest numbers of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the state.
Abayomi, during an update of COVID-19 situation in the state on Friday, said that Eti-Osa has 47 out of the 98 confirmed cases.
The commissioner said that Ikeja has 24 cases, Lagos Mainland- 11, while Alimosho, Agege and Ikorodu has one case respectively.
According to him, out of the 98 confirmed cases in the state, 74 are still active cases, while 24 has recovered and has been discharged. Read more
Air force, police personnel clash in Abuja (Punch)
There was commotion in Abuja on Thursday as some police officers and Air Force men clashed on Abuja-Keffi road, Nyanya.
Trouble started when two young officers of the Air Force driving against the traffic were stopped by the monitoring team of the Federal Capital Territory.
The policemen, the FRSC officials and men of the Nigerian Security and Civil Defence Corps on the team directed the two men to turn back and follow the right way.
This angered the young officers, who howled at the Police Commander, Azeez Idowu. Read more
UN Chief commends Nigeria’s response to COVID-19 pandemic (Nation)
United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres has commended Nigeria’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Speaking during a virtual news briefing in New York on Thursday, Guterres singled out Nigeria as one of the developing countries that have “shown a remarkable capacity to respond’’.
“I have to say this; some of these developing countries have shown a remarkable capacity to respond.
“I was quite impressed to see, for instance, Nigeria putting in place and immediately establishing a hospital. Read more
Fire razes part of NNPC oil exploration site in Nasarawa (DailyTrust)
NNPC GMD, Mallam Mele Kyari Fire has razed down vital documents at the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) oil exploration site in Keana Local Government of Nasarawa State. Witnesses said the fire started on Thursday evening and was contained around midnight. Member representing Keana Constituency at the State House of Assembly, Mohammed Adamu Omadefu paid an on-the-spot assessment visit to the site on Friday. Adamu Omadefu, who is the Chairman, House Committee on Information sympathised with the people of Keana, the state and the Federal Government over the unfortunate incident. Read more
Withdraw soldiers from enforcing lockdown, Falana tells Buhari (Punch)
A Human Rights Activist, Femi Falana (SAN) has asked the Federal Government to withdraw armed troops from enforcing the lockdown order placed on the Federal Capital Territory; Lagos and Ogun States.
He said deploying armed troops is illegal and unconstitutional based on precedent judgements of the courts of the land.
He said, “In the March 29, 2020, national broadcast of President Muhammadu Buhari and the COVID-19 Quarantine Regulations issued thereafter to curtail the spread of coronavirus pandemic the members of the armed forces were not authorised to enforce the Regulations. Read more
Lockdown order: No Nigerian should suffer harm or pain, Buhari warns security agents (DailyTrust)
The Federal Government has urged security and law enforcement agencies to deploy tact and caution in the course of enforcing the lockdown rules, even, in the face of provocation. The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman, Presidential Taskforce Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha made the appeal on Friday in Abuja at the fifth joint national briefing of the committee. He also appealed to all Nigerians to be law abiding, exercise patience and self-restraint. “The message from Mr. President is that no Nigerian should on account of these rules suffer any harm or pains during this period or at any time in our national life. We are getting positive reports that there has been high level of compliance with the lockdown orders in Lagos, Ogun and the Federal Capital Territory. Read more
Twins born in lockdown named ‘Corona’ and ‘Covid’ (Nation)
An Indian mother has named her twins born during the coronavirus lockdown in her country after the deadly virus.
Preeti Verma, from central India, named the boy Covid and the girl Corona.
They were born penultimate Friday.
But she says the names may change when they get older
Preeti said they would not forget the hardships endured during this time.
The 27-year-old, from Chhattisgarh, central India, said that the pandemic has also brought with it some happy memories.
She said: “The delivery happened after facing several difficulties and therefore, me and my husband wanted to make the day memorable. Read more
Queen to address UK as virus deaths rise (BBC)
The Queen will speak to the nation on Sunday about the coronavirus outbreak – as the number of people who died with the virus rose by 684 in 24 hours.
Buckingham Palace said the message, recorded at Windsor Castle, will be broadcast on TV and radio at 20:00 BST.
The Queen, 93, records annual Christmas messages but other addresses are rare.
The Department of Health said that as of 17:00 BST on 2 April, the number of deaths was 3,605, up from 2,921. There are 38,168 confirmed cases. Read more
Cam girls are seeing more lonely customers during the coronavirus lockdown (Metro)
A pandemic changes many, many things. Lots of people are in precarious financial situations as being under lockdown means they can’t go to work and earn in the same way. Others have seen declines in demand and a drop in sales. But for some professions, namely those online, the lockdown has resulted in an increase in work. Read more
China releases $56 billion to banks in virus response (Punch)
China’s central bank said Friday it would cut the reserve requirements for smaller banks to release around 400 billion yuan ($56.3 billion) in liquidity, a move to counter the coronavirus impact on enterprises.
The People’s Bank of China said in a statement it will also slash the interest it pays on financial institutions’ excess reserves for the first time in 12 years, to encourage them to use the cash rather than store it with the central bank.
The moves are the latest in a series of fund injections to help the world’s second-largest economy through the fallout from the COVID-19 crisis. Read more
Coronavirus: Tunisia deploys police robot on lockdown patrol (BBC)
A police robot has been deployed to patrol areas of Tunisia’s capital, Tunis, to ensure that people are observing a coronavirus lockdown.
If it spies anyone walking in the largely deserted streets, it approaches them and asks why they are out.
They must then show their ID and other papers to the robot’s camera, so officers controlling it can check them.
This is the second week of a nationwide lockdown to contain the virus, which has killed 14 people. Read more
Potential coronavirus vaccine shows hope in mouse study (Metro)
Initial tests in mice of a potential COVID-19 vaccine delivered via a fingertip-sized patch have shown it can induce an immune response against the new coronavirus at levels that might prevent infection, U.S. scientists said on Thursday. Researchers around the world are working to develop potential treatments or vaccines against the respiratory disease that has killed nearly 47,000 people and infected almost a million in just a few months. A team at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine in the United States said they were able to move quickly in developing a potential COVID-19 vaccine after working on other coronaviruses that cause Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS). Read more
Lean On Me singer Bill Withers dies at 81 (BBC)
Bill Withers, the acclaimed 1970s soul singer behind hits Ain’t No Sunshine and Lean On Me has died from heart complications aged 81, his family said.
The singer died on Monday in Los Angeles, the family told the Associated Press.
They described him in a statement as a “solitary man with a heart driven to connect to the world”.
“He spoke honestly to people and connected them to each other,” the statement said.
Known for his smooth baritone vocals and sumptuous soul arrangements, he wrote some of the 70s best-remembered songs, including Just The Two Of Us, Lovely Day and Use Me.
Although he stopped recording in 1985, his songs remained a major influence on R&B and hip-hop.
His track Grandma’s Hands was sampled on Blackstreet’s No Diggity, and Eminem reinterpreted Just The Two Of Us on his hit 1997 Bonnie And Clyde. Read more
Coronavirus: Premier League players discuss pay and support options (BBC)
Captains of Premier League clubs have held talks over several days about possible moves to give money to charity during the coronavirus pandemic.
Players across the league have faced calls to take a pay cut, most notably from health secretary Matt Hancock.
Crystal Palace winger Andros Townsend has said players are “an easy target”.
But led by Liverpool skipper Jordan Henderson, captains have held a call to discuss wage deferrals or cuts, or a move to help fund a charitable cause. Read more
Ancelotti wants fair play on season restart date (Punch)
Before the Premier League starts up it must ensure all clubs resume training on the same day, Everton manager Carlo Ancelotti, told a French magazine in an interview published on Friday.
The Premier League is on hold because of the coronavirus pandemic and is scheduled to resume on May 3. But Ancelotti said the situation would be clearer after a meeting between clubs and league officials on Friday.
“One of the important things is that all the clubs resume training at the same time, that there are no disparities, that no one has an advantage over the others,” the 60-year-old Italian told L’Equipe. “Players nowadays are capable of being physically ready within a fortnight.” Read more
Athletics anti-doping programme ‘severely disrupted’ (DailyTrust)
The Athletics Integrity Unit (AIU) has acknowledged that its anti-doping programme will be “severely disrupted” because of the coronavirus pandemic. The AIU, the independent anti-doping watchdog for track and field set up in 2017, operates testing procedures in more than 100 countries. “Under the current conditions of the global pandemic, many of these countries have social distancing restrictions or guidelines in place, these differ from country to country and in turn are all changing very rapidly,” it said. “As a result, there is no doubt that our anti-doping program will be severely disrupted in the short term, however we will still conduct our priority testing missions in those places where it is feasible and safe to do so.” Read more
Premier League clubs to consult players on 30% wage cut as resumption delayed (BBC)
Premier League clubs will ask players to take a 30% pay cut in order to protect jobs as it was announced the season will not resume until “it is safe and appropriate to do so”.
All clubs have agreed to put the proposed “combination of conditional reductions and deferrals” to players.
The Premier League will advance £125m to the EFL and National League, and give £20m towards the NHS.
Clubs still intend on completing all league and cup fixtures. Read more
British rower Tom Ransley retires after Olympic Games delay (BBC)
British rower Tom Ransley, 34, was all set to be part of the men’s eight defending their Olympic title in Tokyo this summer but the postponement of the Games for a year has signalled the end of his career as he announces his retirement.
My time as a rower is up. After 20 years and two Olympic medals I have come to the realisation I have nothing more to give and nothing left to gain.
I have to hang up the oar and I am coming to terms with understanding why. The rescheduling of the Tokyo Olympics to 2021 gave finality to my decision.
Rowing is a sport I never thought I loved. Yet it meant everything to me and I gave everything to it. What I once thought would be a fleeting relationship lasted two decades and it has now run its course. Read more
UEFA warn clubs risk Champions League exclusion if seasons are not completed (DailyTrust)
UEFA and Europe’s top clubs have stated their determination that the current football season should be played to a conclusion and threatened that teams may be excluded from the next Champions League if their domestic competitions are ended prematurely. In a joint letter released late on Thursday, UEFA, the European Club Association (ECA), and the European Leagues body representing nearly a thousand clubs in 29 countries, said that they were working on the possibility of playing on into July and August if need be. The Champions League and Europa League — both of which are frozen in the last-16 stage — could be completed once the domestic seasons are finished, and “stopping competitions should really be the last resort after acknowledging that no calendar alternative would allow to conclude the season.” Read more
Dennis, Okereke crowned champions of Belgium (Nation)
Emmanuel Dennis and fellow Nigerian David Okereke have been crowned champions of Belgium after Club Brugge were named as league champions and the rest of the season voided no thanks to the Coronavirus Pandemic.
The board of the Belgian league decided to end the league season without staging the traditional championship playoffs, according to Nieuwsblad.
Club Brugge were runaway leaders of the league with 70 points from 29 matches with a match to the end of the regular season. KV Oostende, who were second from bottom of the table, will not be relegated. Read more