Health

Okei-Odumakin raises concern as COVID-19 cases cross 10,000 line

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Okei-Odumakin, who expressed this concern on Monday in a statement in Lagos, decried the capacity of government to test citizens for the virus so as to isolate and treat the infected.

“The figure of Nigerians infected with coronavirus keeps surging, meaning that we are yet to reach the plateau of the pandemic.

“Last night, the figure hits 10,162 while Lagos still leads on the chart of new infections with 188 cases, followed by the FCT with 44.

“The capacity of government to test citizens for the virus so as to isolate and treat the infected continues at snail’s speed.

“Testing kits and reagents as well as PPE equipments and materials are said to be in short supply, in addition to their prices hitting the roof.

“Governments are running short of beds in the available isolation centres and treating less severe cases at home is being considered an option,” Okei-OdumkIn said.

According to her, it is however not pessimism all the way as 3007 cases have been successfully treated and discharged.

The group president, who noted that the death toll had climbed to 287, said that the number was less than three per cent of the total number of infected, including those discharged.

She, however, said that the fatalities number, viewed against the total national population of 200 million, showed it was massive.

“As state and federal governments contemplate more relaxation of the lockdown so that life can return to normal, apprehension mounts about the continuing spike in the number of infected persons.

“Another total lockdown appears ruled out for economic and security reasons. The impact of previous lockdowns on individuals and the economy has been massive.

“Besides, its effectiveness in combating the pandemic has also been called to question,” she added.

The president, in addition, expressed concern that citizens with other ailments requiring visits to hospitals had been crowded out of the health facilities.

The rights activist said that fatalities arising from hospitals and health workers refusing to admit and treat emergency or sick patients on the suspicion they could be COVID- 19 patients was on the rise.

Okei-Odumakin said: “More worrisome is the fact that security agencies meant to enforce the lockdowns in operation all over the country have generally compromised and allowed movement of goods and persons for pecuniary gains.

“The unwise dispersal of almajiris in some Northern states, many of them trooping into the South, has also not helped efforts to combat the virus.

“The high rate of new infections in Lagos has been put down to this influx, in addition to its being the economic life wire of the country where all paths meet.

“Managing the pandemic until a vaccine or other means of treatment is found or herd immunity is attained appear to be the unstated hope of the governments and the agencies tasked with managing the crisis.

“The other end, of course, is to continue to trust in God and prayers, and in the resilience and never-say-die spirit of our people while the NCDC continues to try its best.”

She also expressed concern that non-compliance with COVID-19 protocols of PPE and physical distancing by a lot of Nigerians had not made the job of the NCDC easier.

According to her, a vast number of Nigerians still continue to be sceptical about the existence of the virus, believing the lies and half truths that it is a white man’s disease or virus of the affluent and rich.

She also described as condemnable and suspicious, the manner government had handled palliatives and relief materials meant to cushion the impact of coronavirus on the vulnerable segments of the society.

Okei-Odumakin added that this had also fuelled the belief that the virus had only offered another opportunity for a corrupt elite to fleece the country.

“As matters now stand, the last has not been heard of COVID-19 and our response to it at national and state levels,” she said.


Edited By: Wale Ojetimi (NAN)

 

https://nnn.ng/okei-odumakin-raises-concern-as-covid-19-cases-cross-10000-line/

Environment

Flood: Reptiles invade homes in Anambra community

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Dangerous reptiles have began to creep into some residential houses in Ogbaru Local Government Area of Anambra, as a result of flood.


Mr Arinze Awogu, Transition Chairman of Ogbaru Council Area who disclosed this on Sunday, said some displaced people were already moving into the holding camps prepared for them.

Awogu said the level of the River Niger had continued to rise, making streets and flood channels that emptied into the River to flow backwards.

He said no fewer than 1,000 persons have been forced out of their homes.

Ogbaru is a coastal local government with all its 16 communities on the banks of River Niger.

He reported that a big cobra which found its way into an apartment in Atani, was killed with the assistance of operatives from the Atani Divisional Police Station.

According to him, the cobra was killed in Atani, the man in whose house it was killed miraculously escaped being bitten by the snake the previous night as he went into his Boys Quarters in search of some documents.

“On sighting the snake, he quickly shut the door and invited the police from Atani police division who teargassed the room and the reptile became uncomfortable, but as it made its way out, it was killed by those around,” he said.

Awogu advised people of the area to always shut their doors at all times and spread repellants to ward off the unwanted guests as most of them had been displaced from their natural habitat.

“Snakes and other dangerous reptiles are being driven out of their habitats by the flood and people’s homes are likely to be where the deadly animals may be seeking refuge,” he said.

The council chairman said more people were being displaced from their homes by the flood and that they had started moving into the three holding camps in the council.

He regreted that flooding had become a yearly experience for the people and assured them of care while in the camps.

“People are leaving their homes and heading to the holding centres created by the Anambra government for people in flood-prone local government areas.

“The task now is to ensure they have the necessities of existence like food, healthcare and other facilities, while waiting for the flood to recede.

“In addition to what the state government is doing, we are calling on the Federal Government through NEMA to come to our aid,” he said.

Edited By: Chioma Ugboma/Idonije Obakhedo
Source: NAN

 

 

 

https://nnn.ng/flood-reptiles-invade-homes-in-anambra-community/
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Agriculture

NIRSAL, Coy unveil insurance product for crop indemnity

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The Nigeria Incentive-Based Risk Sharing System for Agricultural Lending (NIRSAL Plc), has developed a Hybrid Multi-Peril Crop Indemnity-Index Insurance (HM-II).


Speaking during the launch of the product in Abuja, NIRSAL’s Managing Director, Aliyu Abdulhameed, the HM-II was developed in collaboration with Royal Exchange General Insurance Company (REGIC).

He said that the HM-II was piloted during NIRSAL’s participation in the Central Bank of Nigeria’s (CBN) 2019 Anchor Borrowers’ Programme (ABP) Wet season farming.

NAN reports that the HM-ll , is designed to protect farmers from losses during a planting season caused by bad weather (low & high rainfall, early & late season dry spells.

It also covers lightning, hailstorms and thunderstorms), pest outbreak, disease outbreak, fire outbreak and permanent disability or death of the farmer.

He said that the new product was another step towards the development of the NIRSAL Comprehensive Index Insurance (NCII) conceptualised in 2018 with the ultimate goal of Agric insurance product development by factoring in commodity pricing parameter in the cover to be issued.

” Towards achieving the NCII, the launch of the HM-II marks an improvement to the NIRSAL Area Yield Index Insurance (AYII) which the corporation developed in 2017 and piloted in the wet season farming of the same year to significant effect, covering17,000 farmers and 10,000 hectares with a harvest value of N3Billion.

“This latest development is a testament to the progress NIRSAL Plc is making in the Agricultural insurance space, prior to NIRSAL Plc’s intervention, private underwriters were not insuring agriculture.

” However, leveraging on NIRSAL Plc’s Insurance Pillar and in collaboration with the Nigerian Agricultural Insurance Corporation (NAIC) and the National Insurance Commission (NAICOM).

” We have brought about the inclusion of underwriters other than NAIC in underwriting Agricultural transactions and stimulated the development of new and innovative agricultural insurance products.”

Abdulhameed reiterated NIRSAL Plc’s commitment to not only protect farmers but to also help Nigeria diversify its economy, attain self-sufficiency in food production and entrench inclusive economic growth in alignment with the Federal Government’s Economic Recovery and Growth Plan (ERGP).

Also speaking, Yusuf Yila, Director of CBN’s Development Finance Department revealed that the CBN has already adopted NIRSAL Plc’s Area Yield insurance (AYII) products and looks forward to deploying the HM-II.

He commended NIRSAL Plc for always being at the forefront of agribusiness innovation and encouraged the company to continue on its upward trajectory.

Also, Mr Benjamin Agili, Managing Director REGIC, described the product HM-ll as a that product seeks to protect the small-holder farmers from farming loss during a particular farming season.

This, he said, guarantees sustainability and continuity, “ensuring the farmer is able to remain in business, no matter the loss or situation.”

He thanked NIRSAL Plc for “the exceptional job being done to change the face of agriculture financing in Nigeria” and for giving REGIC the opportunity to partner with it on the HM-II.

On his part, Mr Sunday Thomas, NAICOM’s Commissioner for Insurance who was represented by Mr Leonard Akah, NAICOM’s Director of Policy & Regulation, said that in line with the Federal Government’s Financial Inclusion Strategy, NAICOM was eager to lend its support to the development of a product such as HM-II.

Thomas noted that the partnership between NAICOM, NIRSAL PLC and REGIC to support federal government’s efforts in the promotion of agriculture and economic diversification have become inevitable.

NAN reports that a key advantage of the HM-II is that in cases where such risks happen, benefits paid out to the farmer would be up to the maximum loan or the insured amount after confirmation by advanced satellite technology, an assessment by an agriculture expert, or both.

Edited By: Sadiya Hamza
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/nirsal-coy-unveil-insurance-product-for-crop-indemnity/
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General news

Buhari greets Sen Oluremi Tinibu at 60, salutes her courage, tenacity

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President Muhammadu Buhari has felicitated with the former First Lady of Lagos State, Sen. Oluremi Tinubu, who turns 60 on September 21, 2020.


In a congratulatory message by his spokesman, Mr Femi Adesina, in Abuja on Sunday, Buhari joined family, friends and political associates to celebrate the milestone, adorned by many years of service to the nation and humanity.

The president saluted the senator, who has been re-elected three times to represent Lagos Central, for her courage and tenacity in many daunting situations.

He lauded Mrs Tinubu for remaining ”consistent in her passion for inclusivity, particularly as it relates to women and children, who constitute majority of the population, yet rank high on vulnerability.”

Buhari noted, with gratitude, the loyalty and dedication of Sen. Tinubu to the growth of the governing party, All Progressives Congress (APC).

He also acknowledged her contributions to ”strengthening leadership structures at various levels, always providing wise counsels and advocating middle ground reconciliation in favour of greater good for greater majority.”

According to him, as the Senator turns 60, the stage for better and more rewarding service has been set, with all the experiences gathered over the years from the Lagos State Government House, and as a ranking member the National Assembly.

Buhari prayed for strength, good health and wisdom for the graceful matriarch of the Asiwaju Bola Tinubu family.

Edited By: Sadiya Hamza
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/buhari-greets-sen-oluremi-tinibu-at-60-salutes-her-courage-tenacity/
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Defence/Security

Commandant urges NAFRC trainees, retirees to be mindful of swindlers

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AVM Kingsley Lar, the Commandant, Nigerian Armed Forces Resettlement Centre (NAFRC), Oshodi on Sunday urged the trainees/retirees to be mindful of criminally-minded people who may pose as friends.


The Commandant made this known at the thanksgiving service held for officers who graduated from the Senior/Mid-Level Officers’ Entrepreneurship and Management Course 01/2020 and NAFRC Trainees Course 02/2020.

The thanksgiving service held at the Roman Catholic Church, NAFRC.

Lar said that it was typical of some criminally-minded people to want to dupe the retirees of their hard earned money, thereby urging to also be wary of quick money making schemes.

“Typically, we live in a society where there are many criminally-minded people who don’t care what labour you went through to be able to acquire the small resources you have.

“So, sometimes these people pick on gullible people in the society and sometimes innocent people who are looking for an investment to put their resources, they get duped and lose their hard earned income.

“So, our trainees, particularly those that are retiring after this course who have served 35 years and some less, courtesy of the current administration of government, retirement benefits have been enhanced substantially,” he said.

The Commandant urged the retirees on careful appraisal of business opportunities in order to ensure that they spend their benefits wisely.

“So, my advice to them is that they should be careful how they handle the resources that would be given to them when they finally disengage, they should shine their eyes.

“My advice is that they should be careful what they invest in and be careful who they relate with because alot of fair-weather friends will want to come around them to try to take the little that they have,” he said.

Lar said that the trainees/retirees have been provided with the skills they need in case of additional income asides their benefits.

“We have provided them with entrepreneurship skill, management skills ,some vocational training to be able to cope, if they want additional income.

“Because, like I said the benefits are actually enough for them to live well after retirement. But to be engaged in doing other things, some of them might want to invest,” he said.

Reacting to other para-military, government agencies joining the scheme, the commandant said that he was elated that other sister agencies joined the course.

“I am delighted because when I came in I discovered that this Centre is a national asset where we can train not just the Armed Forces but every Nigerian that is qualified.

“So, I am happy to announce that both the senior officers entrepreneurship course, mid level and the trainees course, all of them have people from the para-military and from strategic ministries, department and agencies of government.

“We have from Customs, Defence Intelligence Agency, National Intelligence Agency ,Department of State Services and also from Resettlement Centre ,we selected some of our senior civilian staffs and officers to participate in the three courses.

“For me it is a thing of joy to see that they have made friends, establish linkages that will be useful to them,” he said.

He also thanked the Defence Headquarters for approving for other sister agencies to join the training scheme.

“The Centre is already known to be a Centre of excellence for vocational training ,what is different is that we now have people who didn’t know about it joining.

“The centre of what we are doing here is agriculture. So, we expect them to go back and feed the nation, feed their communities and make money in the process and also improve their feeding,” he said.

Navy Lt. (Rev. Fr.) Maurice Vandu, the Chaplain of Roman Catholic Church, NAFRC, also enjoined the trainees/retirees to continue to be good ambassadors of the Armed Forces.

He urged them to utilise their benefits judiciously and also put into practice the skills and knowledge acquired.

Maj. Isah Yakubu, the Imam, NAFRC Mosque on Sept. 18 who preached on repentance and forgiveness, urged the retirees to forgive anyone who may have offended them during their service years and training.

The various courses conducted in the centre include Agriculture which comprise of Rabbitry, Fisheries etc, Engineering, Technical, Management, Security etc.

NAN reports that the institution plays a crucial role in preparing military personnel for economically useful life after service.

The Passing Out Ceremony is scheduled for Sept. 25.

Edited By: Ismail Abdulaziz
Source: NAN

https://nnn.ng/commandant-urges-nafrc-trainees-retirees-to-be-mindful-of-swindlers/
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