The Governor of the State of Lagos, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu, urged Lagosians to recognize all signs of malaria as infection with COVID-19 unless and until proved otherwise.

This was announced by the Governor during a press conference on the COVID-19 update at Lagos House, Ikeja, on Tuesday, following a rise in the number of coronavirus cases reported in the region.

“seeking help early and quickly improves the chances of survival for severe to critical cases.”seeking help early and rapidly improves the chances of survival for severe to critical cases.

Governor Sanwo-Olu also noted that it is necessary for citizens to start learning to live and behave responsibly,

To strengthen the efforts of the government and past progress in flattening the curve.

According to the governor, the need for more oxygen plants in the country has now necessitated the second wave of the outbreak, as well as the reopening of some of the previously closed isolation centers, such as the INDO Isolation Center and the Gbagada Isolation Center, in order to control the growing cases a in the fastest possible time, and re-flattening the curve.

“Over the last few weeks, the oxygen demands have risen from 70 six-litre cylinders per day to 350 six-litre cylinders in our Yaba Mainland Hospital. This is projected to be more than double to 750 six-cylinders, before the end of January 2021,” the Governor’s statement by the Chief Press Secretary, Gboyega Akosile, said.

“In addition to supplying oxygen at our isolation centers, through the provision of 10 oxygen and sampling kiosks, the Lagos State Government has decentralized the supply of oxygen throughout the state. Oxygen therapy and other similar facilities will be given to patients who need them.

“Five of these ten oxygen centers have been commissioned, while the other five will be available for use in the next four weeks. We expect these sampling kiosks to be readily accessible as stabilization points for residents who need oxygen therapy at the level of LGAs before forwarding to our isolation centers if necessary.

“This strategy is to increase further the fighting chance of Lagos residents that have contracted the virus and require immediate oxygen therapy,” he said.

Governor Sanwo-Olu, speaking on issues concerning the resumption of schools in Lagos State in accordance with the Federal Government’s guidelines, said the beginning of school activities on Monday “was a difficult decision to make in light of the second wave of COVID-19, but I assure you it was the best decision for our children’s safety and long-term development, especially our most vulnerable children.”

A file photo of Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu. Photo: Twitter-@jidesanwoolu

A file photo of Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu. Photo: Twitter-@jidesanwoolu

Stressing the need for students to return to school to resume their education at different stages, Governor Sanwo-Olu reported that after the lockdown of last year needed by the first wave of COVID-19 in Nigeria, nearly 24,000 students are still to register in public schools.

We are now searching for over 24,000 of them who have not returned to school last year since the first lockout and children have to come back to school. There is a challenge, however, whether you leave them away for too long and their parents or guardians still turn them to other things instead of ensuring that they have time to come back to study even if it is twice or thrice a week.

Since the beginning of a session, at least they have been registered, and they will be tracked. If not, they can only wander the streets and become threatened. We have seen incidents of child violence and all the unprintable things that are being done to these children. So, to a large degree, we agree that schools are often the safe-haven for them.

“We have completed the roster in which we ensure that they maintain social distance and that we monitor,” he said.

Governor Sanwo-Olu also announced that some vaccine manufacturers had opened negotiations with the Lagos State Government to ensure catering for people.

He said: “We are closely monitoring the Federal Government’s ongoing action to procure vaccines for COVID-19 for use in Nigeria.” We have opened talks with vaccine suppliers to ensure that when the vaccine arrives, Lagosians cater to it.

In the meantime, we are designing a plan to formulate the requirements, recommendations and legislative system for vaccine provision and surveillance in Lagos.

In the control of the COVID-19 pandemic, in the fields of monitoring, oxygen deployment, as well as the clinical management of mild to serious cases, the Lagos State Government is actively working with the private sector. These collaborations have helped strengthen the response of the State to the ever-changing circumstances of the pandemic.

“The Lagos State Government is currently evaluating the viability of Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) for the operation of some of our public isolation centers in an attempt to further pursue this established synergistic strategy. We hope this would speed up the reopening of previously closed centers, and also avail us the benefits of the operational cost-efficiencies that experienced private sector management can bring to bear.”

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