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COVID-19: Nigeria yet to record any death from Omicron variant – NCDC

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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, (NCDC) says no person in Nigeria has died from the Omicron variant of COVID-19 as the disease surges across the country.

The NCDC Director-General, Dr Ifedayo Adetifa, disclosed this to journalists in Abuja on Friday.

Recall that data from the African Union (AU) Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shows that the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 is spreading rapidly across the African continent.

The health agency said as of Thursday, that 22 countries have reported the presence of the Omicron variant.

Adetifa noted that Omicron has raised the number of confirmed cases in the country to 500 per cent and now has become the dominant variant in the country.

He said the country has now identified a further 45 cases of the Omicron variant, bringing the total figure of confirmed infections to 51 in Nigeria.

45 additional omicron variants were not cases from travel history, rather they are in the country, which suggests that the country is already experiencing a community transmission.

He said the six earlier detected Omicron cases were detected in persons with recent travel history to South Africa.

The NCDC boss stressed that it was important for Nigerians to maintain physical distance and avoid contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness.

“We’re counting on you to #CelebrateResponsibly and #TakeResponsibility to keep yourself and your loved ones safe from COVID-19,” he advised.

He said to curb the spread of Omicron, reducing group sizes, increasing physical distance, reducing the duration of contacts and closing high-risk premises was important.

He noted that indoor mixing was the “biggest risk factor” for the spread of the Omicron variant and that large gatherings risked creating “multiple spreading events”.

According to him, Nigerians should take the advisory issued by the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19.