…As U.S. COVID-19 assistance to Nigeria hits N15.5bn***
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) highlighted Thursday that Nigeria recorded 626 new COVID-19 cases, bringing the total infections to 27,110.
The NCDC which made this known on its official twitter handle, also said Nigeria recorded 13 deaths, bringing the total to 616 deaths in 35 states and the FCT. The health agency said that no new state reported a case in the last 24 hours.
The NCDC said that Lagos State reported the highest number of cases with 193 new cases while FCT reported 85 new infections.
Others are: Oyo-41, Edo-38, Kwara-34, Abia-31, Ogun-29, Ondo-28, Rivers-26, Osun-21, Akwa Ibom-18, Delta-18, Enugu-15, Kaduna-13, Plateau-11, Borno-8, Bauchi-7, Adamawa-5, Gombe-4 and Sokoto-1.
The Director-General NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, disclosed that a team is enroute Cross River to begin COVID-19 testing.
He stressed that testing was the only pathway into understanding.
The DG said by the end of next week, all states would have capacity to test for COVID-19 with only four states away.
On the two million test target, Ihekweazu said that achieving the goal was a collective responsibility.
He said the target was birthed after the Africa CDC in consultation with all African countries agreed to test one percent of its population.
“This is not a target for NCDC, PTF, Ministry of Health alone, it’s a target for every Nigerian.
“It is either we achieve it or we come back here to say the same thing and we will be on this journey and more people will die.
“This target is but an abstract or an academic, it’s something that we need to push ourselves to achieve.”
In the meantime, the United States’ COVID-19 emergency aid to Nigeria rose to 41.3 million dollars (N15.5 billion) as of Thursday, according to the Department of State.
This represents an additional 11.3 million dollars (N4.2 billion) compared with the 30 million dollars (N11.2 billion) assistance to Nigeria announced by the U.S. in May.
In a statement on Thursday, the department said the amount was part of a 1.3 billion dollar (N488.8 billion) COVID-19 aid so far announced by the government for 120 countries.
It gave a breakdown of Nigeria’s share to include 3.3 million dollars (N1.2 billion) for health assistance.
According to the statement, 34 million dollars (N12.7 billion) is meant for “humanitarian funding for risk-communications, water and sanitation, infection-prevention, coordination and emergency food assistance”.
It added that 4.1 million dollars or N1.5 billion is reserved for humanitarian assistance for vulnerable people, including internally displaced persons.
“This assistance joins more than 8.1 billion dollars (N3 trillion) in total assistance for Nigeria over the past 20 years, including more than 5.2 billion dollars (N1.9 trillion) for health”, it said.
The department said the total 1.3 billion dollar package was in addition to not less than 100 billion dollars (N37.6 trillion) in global health funding by the U.S. in the last 10 years.
It added that the country had also dished out nearly 70 billion dollars (N26.3 trillion) in “overseas humanitarian assistance” within the period.
As of Tuesday, Nigeria had 26,484 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 603 deaths and 10,152 recoveries, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).