Nigeria now has 389 new coronavirus disease (COVID-19) cases, bringing the new tally across the country to 8,733.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) Wednesday night confirmed the new cases via its official Twitter handle @NCDCgov explaining that Lagos accounted for a whopping 256 of the new cases. Katsina got 23, Edo 22, Rivers 14, Kano 13, while Adamawa and Akwa Ibom both got 11 each. While Kaduna accounted for seven cases, Kwara and Nasarawa got six apiece. Gombe, Plateau, Abia, Delta, Benue, Niger, Kogi and Oyo all recorded two cases each. Imo, Borno, Ogun and Anambra complete the list with one infection each.
NCDC listed 2,501 patients as discharged and 254 deaths.
Meanwhile, earlier in the day during a briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 in Abuja, the Minister of State for Education, Emeka Nwajiuba, gave reasons why schools cannot reopen yet. While dismissing reports that schools would reopen on June 8, Nwajiuba said the government could not afford to take any costly risk, especially as it regards the safety of pupils and students in the country.
“Until we are sure these children can go to school, return safely and not bring up with them COVID-19 and infect people who are more susceptible than they are, then we are running a huge risk and God forbid, in our hurry, something happens to our children, I am not sure how anybody will be able to retrieve what has been lost,” he said.
He said the ministry was being guided by the advice of experts including the World Health Organisation (WHO).
He said that because education is on the concurrent list of the Nigerian Constitution, the decision to reopen schools would be carefully arrived at and appealed to private school owners to co-operate with the government in ensuring a safe reopening.
Also, the Minister of Health, Osagie Enahire, said at the same briefing that the increasing number of new COVID-19 cases may have an overwhelming effect on the nation’s health system.
The nation, he said, has a little above 5,000 beds, adding that there is an urgent need to expand the bed spaces in the treatment centres as the number of infections increase.