The second wave of the coronavirus has continued to sweep across Nigeria with 1,244 new infections recorded in 18 states across the country on Monday. Nigeria also recorded three new deaths.
On Sunday, Nigeria crossed the grim milestone of over 100,000 infections as health officials call for stricter enforcement of safety measures.
The 1 244 new cases on Monday pushed the total number of infections in the country to 101, 331.
One in every six persons (16 per cent) tested for COVID-19 in Nigeria in the past two weeks tested positive for the virus, indicating how far the virus has spread,
The spike in infections is also feeding through into fatalities.
Three people died from the disease on Monday, taking the death toll to 1,361 in total.
Nigeria recorded one of its highest coronavirus-related deaths on Friday, with 12 people dying from the virus.
In the past 24 days, there have been 149 fatalities as a result of COVID-19 complications in Nigeria.
The government blamed the increasing deaths on late referral of COVID-19 patients to treatment centres.
The Minister of State for Health, Olorunnimbe Mamora, speaking at the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 briefing on Tuesday, said caregivers are holding on to suspected cases for too long before presenting them for treatment.
But health experts believe the lowering of guard on safety and the weak enforcement of protocols especially in the country’s major airports in Abuja and Lagos could be responsible for the recent surge, warning that the situation could get worse if citizens keep violating safety protocols.
The federal government recently warned that a significant increase in coronavirus infections in Nigeria appears imminent this January due to continued violation of safety protocols during the Christmas period.
Active cases in the country rose sharply from about 3,000 about a month ago to nearly 20, 000 due to a rise in new infections.
Of the over 101,000 cases so far, 80,491 patients have been discharged from hospitals after treatment.
The 1,244 new cases are reported from 18 states- Lagos (774), FCT (125), Plateau (102), Anambra (47), Ondo (46), Rivers (27), Edo (18), Kaduna (16), Ogun (16), Gombe (16), Bauchi (11), Kano (11), Nasarawa (10), Akwa Ibom (7), Sokoto (7), Borno (5), Ekiti (4), and Zamfara (2).
Lagos led with 774 new cases on Monday, more than half of the daily total. The commercial city is Nigeria’s coronavirus epicentre with a total of over 36,000 confirmed cases and about 256 deaths.
The Minister of State for Health, Mr Mamora, warned Nigerians against complacency in containing the COVID-19 pandemic as the much-awaited vaccines may not arrive the country as soon as expected.