The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 has urged state governors not to close down their treatment centres even as the government confirms new strain of the pandemic in the country.
The government, however, allayed the fears of the people, saying there is no cause for alarm.
“In 2021, its vaccines plus NPIs. As we make progress on this NPIs +Vaccines phase, I urge the State Government not to close down their treatment centres.
“Rather, they should keep them running efficiently and smoothly because the cases of infections are rising and we must intensify our efforts to support the public sector laboratories with critical reagents.
“The PTF expects the leadership of all Federal Tertiary Health Institutions to raise their level of testing and turnaround for results,” PTF Chairman and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha, said on Thursday in Abuja at a media briefing.
He urged Nigerians not to panic over the new coronavirus already imported into the country, saying we are studying it.
“The PTF is aware of the global conversation on the new strain of virus discovered in the UK.
“We have assured Nigerians that our experts working with the WHO are studying the variant strain and shall make a statement at the appropriate time.”
Persecondnews reports that the Head of Africa Centre for Disease Control had disclosed on Thursday that a new strain of the virus had been discovered in the country.
A new variant of the SARS-CoV-2 virus which is more contagious was announced in the United Kingdom and South Africa, compelling international travel restrictions and other measures.
On the possibility of banning international travels especially from the UK, South Africa and some very high risk areas, Mustapha said government would continue to evaluate the actions taken by the various countries on the matter.
“We note that some of the countries that initially banned flights have now adopted the requirement already in place in Nigeria.
“We have also weighed the security, economic and social implications of a full ban especially when we consider the situation in our neighboring countries and the ECOWAS as a whole.
“The PTF shall increase measures pertaining to those high burden countries to scale down the possibilities of importation,” the SGF said.
“The PTF is working assiduously on the turn around time for receiving test results. We are working with the NCDC to improve on this.
“Nigerians should expect improvement very soon. For us on the PTF, we thank Mr. President for the confidence he has in our ability to deliver on the mandate and we rededicate ourselves to more work.
“The successes recorded by the PTF in managing the control of the pandemic since March 2020 could never have been possible without the support of our partners being the media that took the message to Nigerians.
“We also thank the National Assembly, the Sub-National entities, the private sector coalition, the international community, development partners well-meaning Nigerians security agencies and our frontline workers. The list is endless,” Mustapha said.