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India Tops 24 Million COVID-19 Cases As New Variant Spreads Across Globe

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India Prime Minister Narendra Modi has raised an alarm over the rapid spread of the highly transmissible coronavirus mutant first detected in the country as the official tally of infections crossed 24 million, and 4,000 persons died for the third straight day.

Jairo Mendez, a World Health Organization infectious diseases expert said the Indian B.1.617 variant of the virus has been found in cases in eight countries of the Americas, including Canada and the United States.

Mendez said “These variants have a greater capacity for transmission, but so far we have not found any collateral consequences” adding that “the only worry is that they spread faster.”

People infected by the variant included travellers in Panama and Argentina who had arrived from India or Europe. In the Caribbean, cases of the Indian variant have been detected in Aruba, Dutch St Maarten and the French department of Guadeloupe.

The mutant strain has also been detected in Britain, as well as in Singapore.

According to health ministry data, India recorded 4,000 deaths and 343,144 infections in the last 24 hours.

Public Health England said the total number of confirmed cases of the variant had more than doubled in the past week to 1,313 across the United Kingdom.

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson has said “We are anxious about it – it has been spreading,” adding that there would be meetings to discuss what to do. “We’re ruling nothing out.”

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Health

FG Urges Nigerians To Take Second COVID-19 Jab

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AstraZeneca

Minister of environment, Abubakar Mohammed has urged all Nigerians to take the second dose of COVID-19 vaccine currently being given across the country.

The minister made the plea during the northeast townhall meeting on COVID-19 vaccination organized by the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA) in Yola.  Mohammed said the second jab is important in order to get full protection against the coronavirus.

Nigerians have also been advised to avoid non-essential travels, especially to countries that are posting increasing numbers of COVID-19 deaths, including Brazil, India and Turkey.  Authorities say any person who visited those countries within 14 days preceding traveling to Nigeria shall be denied entry into the country.

“Among other travel guidelines, individuals, transporters and airlines who flout the guidelines shall be sanctioned.

“State government should ensure all international traveling passengers adhere to the mandatory seven days isolation period and also to repeat the COVID-19 PCR test on the 7th day after arrival.”

The executive director of NPHCDA, Dr Faisal Shuaibu, said the location of the second jab may differ from the first one adding that the vaccines may have side effect.

“Please note that the location of the first dose may be different from the location of the second dose. Be sure to confirm this. I want to use this opportunity to reiterate that some people would experience side effects after vaccination, this is normal and usually subsides over a couple of days. This is the communication we tell our health workers.”

“At the presidential steering committee we have made a decision to administer first and second doses of two to 2million Nigerians rather than administering 4million as first doses only due to delays in vaccine shipment all over the world including us here in Nigeria,” he stated.

He explained that the two doses can be administered no more than 12 weeks apart saying, “we are confident that this was the right decision.

Governor Ahmadu Umaru Fintiri, who was represented by his deputy, Crowther Seth praised NPHCDA for the laudable initiative.

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India Reopens Major Cities As New COVID Cases Hit Two-Month

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India has eased COVID-19 restrictions in some of its big cities as coronavirus infections in the country fell to a two-month low of one hundred and a half thousand.  This follows several days of four hundred thousand plus cases in May, and more than twenty-four hundred deaths.

The country was dealing with record-breaking numbers of cases and deaths that pushed it to the ignoble position as second worst hit nation after the united states, with just under 29 million infections.

Authorities in Delhi and Mumbai, as well as other cities and states, imposed restrictions on movement and activities to combat the surge.

Delhi chief minister, Arvind Kerjriwal has ordered half of the capital’s shops to open on odd and even numbered days of the month in a bid to limit crowds, while Delhi offices are allowed to run at half their capacity.

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DR Congo Faces Third Wave Of Coronavirus

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DR Congo Faces Third Wave Of Coronavirus

Democratic Republic of Congo`s health minister Jean-Jacques Mbungani has said the country is facing a third wave of coronavirus infections, with its epicentre in the capital, Kinshasa, one of Africa’s most-populous cities.

Mbungani officially announce the onset of the third wave of the covid-19 on Thursday following health authorities concern about a recent spike in infections that saw 243 new cases recorded on Wednesday, the highest daily figure since march.

The World Health Organization said on Wednesday it was concerned about the spread in Kinshasa of the more transmissible delta or India variant.

Meanwhile, the parliament in the DR Congo has voted to extend a state of emergency or martial law in eastern provinces of Ituri and North Kivu, that have been rocked by insecurity by 15 days.

The president Félix Tshisekedi imposed the measure early may. Military administrations have replaced the civilian authorities to curb insecurity in the provinces where several attacks carried out by rebels have left thousands dead.

The violence has been on the increase despite the presence of thousands of UN peacekeepers.

Some of the attacks have been blamed on the Allied Democratic Forces (ADF) – one of dozens of armed groups operating there.

The east also seen violence between ethnic groups.

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