Mr Anthony Fasehun, the Programme Officer, South West for the Christian Rural and Urban Development Association of Nigeria (CRUDAN), has called on government to urgently increase testing centres on COVID-19 to curb its spread.
Fasehun made the call in a statement made available to the News Agency of Nigeria in Ibadan on Monday.
The group urged the government to make more kits available so as to increase the number of people being tested for the virus in a bid to contain it.
It appreciated government’s swift response at both federal and state levels in the fight against coronavirus in the country.
“Since COVID-19 is new, the test centres and kits are not enough. In a population of over 200 million, more people need to be tested, especially in high risk states.
“NCDC has been working tirelessly both in the various testing centres and through the media awareness, we appreciate its commitment.
“We must not wait till the virus gets to all the 36 states of the federation as it will be overwhelming to manage an outbreak, at a time maternal and child death, tuberculosis, malaria and lassa fever are still ravaging our land.
“Nigerians should see the test as an obligation to the country. Already the NCDC has developed a risk assessment that citizens can carry out to ascertain their risk level.
“For anyone who has just returned to the country, especially from high risk countries or visited any of the states with a case, should voluntarily go for a test.
“It is better to take the test than living with the fear of the unknown,” the group said.
It also suggested that security should be beefed up more than ever at a time like this to prevent cases of robbery, violence and other forms of abuse.
The group also advocated training and recruitment of more personnel and volunteers that would support the ongoing effort on containment.
“There should be collaboration with civil society groups that are credible and experienced in humanitarian work. This will further strengthen the work of the government, especially in the distribution of relief materials.
“Also, there is a need to increase the number of the beneficiaries of the N20,000 cash grant, as feedback from the citizens suggest exclusion of many people who are genuinely vulnerable.
“There is a need to intensify the awareness on COVID-19, especially in the rural communities as there are so many myths and misconceptions,” it said.
The group, however, called on Christian faithful to use the occasion of Easter to pray more than ever before.
“We need to call on God to heal our land and stop this pandemic.
“There is despair, anxiety, fear and disturbances in the land. God rescued his people during the plague while they were in slavery in Egypt; same God is still alive.
“Let us unite in prayer irrespective of our denomination.
“Our teachings should bring peace, hope and comfort. This is not the time to compete or proof scholastic prowess.
“We need God’s intervention not just in Nigeria but all over the world,” the group said.
Edited By: Fela Fashoro/Adeleye Ajayi (NAN)https://nnn.ng/covid-19-christian-group-calls-for-increased-testing-centres-more-kits/
Youths should be drivers of innovation, creativity for a better Nigeria- Ex-VC Bell University
Prof. Isaac Adeyemi, the former Vice Chancellor, Bells University of Technology, Ogun, has charged Nigerian youths to harnessy their knowledge via the internet to be drivers of innovation and creativity for a better Nigeria.
“The youths are the most vulnerable to the post COVID-19 events, including the educational system.
“To position themselves for a successful career, the youths being exposed to technology should take the initiative to see to it that they use the knowledge for innovation and creativity.
‘’That will develop the economy of the country because each country is trying to design means of survival to float,” Adeyemi said.
The former VC said through collaboration with local or international agencies or organisations, some of which are online, youth can leverage and adapt knowledge to suit local situations.
“This can translate into national or state activities that can grow the economy of Nigeria and put it in the global stage.
Also speaking at the event, Prof. Seyi Osunade, Associate Professor, Computer Science department, University of Ibadan, said based on what was happening right now with the effects of COVID-19 pandemic, government and education stakeholders should do more of advocacy.
“That is creating an awareness for the youths on what the pandemic is, that it is real and people still need to take precautions.
“Though the number of infected people are dropping, people still need to take precautions and as schools are preparing to resume, people should work towards maintaining the safety protocols and adhere to COVID-19 guidelines.
“Our curriculum should focus more on practical skills and expressions, that is they should teach things that our students can do here to provide local solutions to our challenges.
“Things they can develop into products, because if we can adapt the knowledge we have into a working solution it will go a long way for us.
“Technical and vocational education should be encouraged more even in our normal school curriculum,” Osunade said.
The Pioneer of SSII, Mrs Omokehinde Deji-Akinpelu said the organisation was focused on community service.
She said that the initiative started formally in 2014 with mentoring of undergraduate students at Lead City University.
Deji-Akinpelu stated that the vision of the organization was to raise purpose driven young men and women who would become world renowned in conduct, character and competence.
“We are set out to impart them with positive values and right attitude to life that will enable them become accountable and responsible adults
“You will agree with me that part of what we are facing today with our political leaders in Nigeria is lack of right mentoring.
“Some of these youths are taking wrong steps and decisions because they lack right and proper mentoring, we need to address this for a better Nigeria.”
Deji-Akinpelu further stated that youths would rather model their lives after celebrities and people they don’t even have direct access to and that had its disadvantages.
Two of the participants who spoke to NAN, Oluwatobi Oduola and Ayomide Olukorede said their passion to influence teenagers and mentor them towards greatness fueled their participation.
They identified lack of sense of direction and career choice as major challenges teenagers are faced with and the need to help as many youths to succeed in life despite all odds.
Edited By: Bayo Sekoni
Dabiri-Erewa hails Nigerian Ezeajughi’s re-election as UK Mayor, Ajagba’s United States boxing victory
Hon. Abike Dabiri-Erewa, Chairman/CEO, Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM), has congratulated Nigerian-born scientist, Ernest Ezeajughi, who was elected to serve a second term as the Mayor of Brent.
She also commended Nigerian-born Boxer, Efe Ajagba for defeating his American opponent, Jonnie Rice, in a keenly contested bout on Saturday night at the Bubble in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The congratulatory messages were contained in two separate statements issued on Sunday by NIDCOM Head of Media and Public Relations, Abdur-Rahman Balogun in Abuja.
Dabiri-Erewa said the re-election of Councillor Ezeajughi, was a testimony to his outstanding performance during his first term, which earned him the respect of the people.
She advised him to continue to impact positively on the people, especially those who gave him the mandate, by living up to their expectations.
The NiDCOM boss urged other Nigerians living abroad to emulate the friendly disposition of Ezeajughi that endeared him to the people outside the shores of Nigeria.
The re-election followed the first ever virtual Annual General Meeting (AGM) of the council.
Ezeajughi was first elected Mayor in 2019 and had gone about discharging his duties with gusto.
Unfortunately, due to the Coronavirus pandemic, he has had to cut back on his outings this year but in recognition of his sterling work, the council voted to return him to office for another year.
The event was attended by councillors from across the borough and it also confirmed that Councillor Lia Colacicco, who represents Mapesbury ward, would continue as deputy mayor.
In a related development, the NiDCOM boss also hailed Nigerian-born boxer, Efe Ajagba for defeating his American opponent Jonnie Rice.
She said that the victory over the American boxer was not only a thing of pride to Nigerians, but to Africa as a whole.
“I congratulate you on this wonderful feat, for winning this tensed but historical fight.
“We are truly proud of you and urge you to continue to use your professional prowess to extol the virtues of Nigerian heritage.
“Your shinning beacon serves as inspiration to the youths of Nigeria.
“Your victory is also a testimony to the fact that Nigerians are great people, contributing in many ways to the development of the country and the continent as a whole,” Dabiri-Erewa stated.
She noted with satisfaction that in spite of the challenges being faced by the 26 years old Ajagba in his career, he had remained determined, focused and did not allow that to lure him into any form of criminality or depression.
This is only the second time Ajagba would be winning a fight via a 10-round unanimous decision.
While Ajagba has had it ‘easier’ in most of his other fights, he was pushed to the limits against Rice; claiming a ten-round unanimous decision over the 33-year-old American boxer.
As reported by Boxing Scene, Judge Max DeLuca had the bout 98-92, while judges Adalaide Byrd and Dave Moretti scored it 99-91 in favour of Ajagba.
This is the second time Ajagba would be winning a fight via unanimous decision, haven knocked down all his previous challengers.
Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Felix Ajide
Renown Ibadan-born businessman, Adegoke joins APC officially in Oyo
He made the announcement while addressing his supporters on Sunday in Ibadan.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that Adegoke, a political disciple of Sen. Rasheed Ladoja, is the Ajia-Balogun Olubadan of Ibadanland.
NAN also recalled that Adegoke contested the House of Representatives seat for Ibadan South-West/North-West Federal constituency in 2015 on the platform of Accord Party (AP) and lost.
He was also part of those who worked for the emergence of the present administration of Gov. Seyi Makinde under the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) in the state.
Adegoke, who is eyeing the Oyo South Senatorial seat, said his decision was after several consultation with his political associates, leaders and supporters across the 33 local government of the state.
Adegoke thanked his supporters for their concern on the matter, saying there was no cause for alarm.
According to him, “Few days ago there was a fake news story that I, Olooye Adegboyega Taofeek Adegoke has decided to stay back in the PDP.
Supporters expressed joy over the news coming from their political leader and benefactor.
Edited By: Bayo Sekoni
Schools resumption: Lalong urges parents to teach children COVID-19 safety protocols
Gov. Simon Lalong of Plateau has urged parents in the state to teach their children the safety protocols against COVID-19, preparatory to resumption of schools targeted for end of October.
Lalong had in a broadcast to the people of the state said schools would resume October ending, but was not definite on the date.
He made the call on Sunday at a send off Church mass for the outgoing Prior Provincial of the Catholic Church Order of St. Augustine in Nigeria, Rev. Fr. John Abubakar, at the St. Monica’s Parish Rantya, Jos.
News Agency of Nigeria reports that St Augustinians in the Catholic Church were accredited with parish and pastoral work, scientific study, teaching and missions, among others.
The governor said he made the call because children easily emulated what parents did, more than instructions given to them elsewhere.
Besides, he said, children were most vulnerable to the disease and must be protected, first by the parents.
“I appeal to parents to comply with COVID-19 protocols for the children to emulate, they are most vulnerable because they move around more than us.
“It is the toughest decision we will make to allow innocent children to return to school, ” he said.
Lalong explained that Plateau was now an epicenter of COVID-19 pandemic resulting from the large number of people tested daily in its three testing centres.
“In the 36 states, we are the third in terms of testing capacity and recognised by the World Health Organisation (WHO) for doing well.
“We test 500 people to 700 people daily, we want everyone to know their health status for appropriate action,” he said.
He commended the outgoing Prior Provincial for his diligence in service during his tenure for eight years and prayed for God’s blessings on him.
“In addition to establishing a new secondary school here, he told me he was lobbying for the establishment of an Augustinian University in Plateau,” he said.
The governor expressed optimism that the university would be a reality even in his absence, because of the foundation he had laid for the process.
He thanked the Prior Provincial for his contributions to the Catholic Church and Plateau, expressing the desire that his successor would consolidate on his achievements for greater successes.
Delivering the homily titled: ` God’s Unmerited Love’, Abubakar urged the congregation to focus on their gifts and talents and desist from comparing their lives with other people.
“We should seize opportunity to be impactful with our talents and gifts and stop the mistake of comparing yourselves with others. How God chooses to operate is up to him,”he said.
He said people were appreciated when they left an office because of the value they have added to lives.
Abubakar appreciated the Plateau Government and people of the state for the love they showered on him during his stay, saying their cooperation made his work easy while urging them to extend such gesture to his successor.
Edited By: Emmanuel Nwoye and Abdullahi Yusuf