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30 May 2020

Ex-NNPC Boss Allegedly Died Of COVID-19, Hospital Where He Was Treated Last Revealed

On Friday night, Maikanti Baru, former group managing director (GMD) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC), drew his last breath.
Mele Kyari, his successor, who broke the news on Twitter, did not state the cause of his death, though he was reported to have been sick.

His death is shocking, no doubt, but what is perhaps more tragic is that it is another tragedy in a string of tragedies in the Baru family.

Before he passed, the grim reaper had hit Baru’s family. He lost three immediate members of his family; his mother, sister and son —all in one year!

Mohammed, his son, died after collapsing in May 2017 while in UAE.

At the time, he was studying at the American University, Sharjah.

Baru lost him about two weeks after his sister died in the same month.

The former NNPC GMD was preparing to depart Nigeria for the 2017 Offshore Technology Conference (OTC) in Texas, United States, when death struck his sister.

Also, he was at the time still mourning Fatima Baru, his mother, who died in her hometown in Misau local government area of Bauchi state.

His mother passed away after a brief illness at the age of 102, leaving behind five children and over 50 grandchildren.

However, self-proclaimed, Minister of Information & Diaspora, Adetutu Balogun, has via her Twitter page said that Baru died of COVID-19 after spending two days at the NNPC clinic before giving up the ghost at Ceder Crest Hospital, Abuja.

Buhari May Lose Another Aide - Primate Ayodele Tells Buhari, New CoS To Be Prayerful, Releases New Prophesy

The leader of INRI Evangelical spiritual church, Primate Elijah Ayodele, has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to be prayerful.
Ayodele said Buhari should “wake up” and take to prayer so as not to “lose another aide.”

The clergyman, who made the call in his latest prophecy, also warned the new Chief of Staff to the President, Ibrahim Gambari to be prayerful.

He said Gambari will step on toes because he wants to change things and some politicians will frame him up.

Ayodele called for prayers so as to avert another death in the Presidential Villa.

He said: “Buhari should wake up. He doesn’t have a grip on his government. There will be crisis in Buhari’s government, and he must be prayerful so as not to lose another special aide.

“Chief of staff will step on toes because he wants to change so many things, the politicians will also frame him up. Prayers need to be made so as not to see another death in the villa.”

Ayodele also called for the sack of Service Chiefs because they are one of the reasons, “we still have security threats by insurgents. Once they are replaced, insurgency will stop.”

Pastor Sentenced To Death For Murder

An Ondo State based pastor, Kolawole Samson, has been sentenced to death by hanging for killing one Ayo Olaniyi at a village near Okeigbo area of the state.
The late Olaniyi was said to have in March 2016, gone to hunt frogs alongside three others at a fish pond owned by Pastor Kolawole.

Pastor Kolawole was sentenced to death by an Ondo state High Court sitting in Akure presided over by Justice Ademola Bola.

Kolawole was found guilty of inflicting injury on the deceased’s head with a cutlass.

The deceased later died at a hospital he was admitted.

Prosecuting Counsel, Mr Olusegun Akeredolu and Mrs Omotola Ologun, argued that the offence was contrary to Section 316 and punishable under Section 319 of the Criminal Code, Cap 37, Laws of Ondo State (2006).

Mother of the deceased was one the witnesses called to testify during trial.

Pastor Kolawole however pleaded not guilty to the charges.

Justice Bola however ruled that all evidence before the court showed that Pastor Kolawole was guilty of killing Olaniyi.

The judge held that Samson Kolawole should die by hanging.

President Buhari Mourns As Another Family Member Dies Amidst COVID-19 Pandemic

President Muhammadu Buhari has lost another nephew, Alhaji Ibrahim Dauda.
Duada died in Daura, Katsina State, following a prolonged illness.

The death of Dauda came less than a month after that of Mutari Dauda, who died on May 8.

In a condolence message, Buhari said the death had robbed the family and the Daura community of one of its finest gentlemen.

“I am deeply touched and devastated by the passing of yet another family member, a man who had demonstrated amazing kindness and honesty in all his dealings,” the President said.

In a statement by his Senior Special Assistant on Media and Publicity, Mallam Garba Shehu, Buhari prayed God to forgive the soul of the deceased and reward his great and noble deeds with paradise.

The deceased was survived by a number of children, including Dauda Ibrahim, a Chief Administrative Officer in State House, Abuja.

Obama, Oprah, Rihanna and Beyonce speak out on the death of George Floyd

Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Rihanna and Beyonce have spoken out on the death of George Floyd, the black man who died after being pinned down by a white police officer in Minneapolis.
The singers took to their respective Instagram pages to condemn the murder and demanded that more charges should be brought on all those involved in the death of George Floyd after ex- Minneapolis officer, Derek Chauvin, who knelt on George Floyd's neck till he died, was arrested and charged with 3rd degree murder on Friday.

“For the last few days, the magnitude of devastation, anger, sadness I’ve felt has been overwhelming to say the least!” Rihanna wrote on her page, with a photo of George. “Watching my people get murdered and lynched day after day pushed me to a heavy place in my heart!”

She continued, “To the point of staying away from socials, just to avoid hearing the blood curdling agony in George Floyd’s voice again, begging over and over for his life!!! The look of enticement, the pure joy and climax on the face of this bigot, murderer, thug, pig, bum, Derek Chauvin, haunts me!!”

“I can’t shake this! I can’t get over an ambulance pulling up to an arrest, a paramedic checking a pulse without removing the very thing that’s hindering it! Is this that fucking normal??? If intentional MURDER is the fit consequence for ‘drugs’ or ‘resisting arrest’….then what’s the fit consequence for MURDER???! #GeorgeFloyd #AhmaudArbery #BreonnaTaylor.”

Beyonce also followed up with her own video on her Instagram.

“If you want to demand more charges brought on all those involved in the death of George Floyd, click the link in my bio to sign the petition,” she urged fans.

Ex-President Barack Obama alsoso took to his official page to share his thoughts on the killing and Oprah promised that George Floyd will not just end up as a hashtag.

Swipe left below to see all their tributes:

Bauchi Government Says Cause Of 200 Mysterious Deaths Is Illegal Abortions

An investigation carried out by the Bauchi State Primary Healthcare Development Agency has revealed that illegal abortion by unqualified medical practitioners is the cause of mysterious deaths in Azare and other local government areas in the northern part of the state.
 
At least 200 women have died in Bauchi as a result of this and there are projections that the number could be more at the end of the investigation.

The Executive Chairman of the agency, Dr Rilwanu Mohammed, who disclosed this Friday, May 29, at an interactive session organized by the Bauchi State Public Health Media Network, said the investigation had not been concluded on the development, but preliminary findings had revealed that the number of such deaths was about 200, adding that the number could be more at the end of the investigation.

Mohammed said the deaths resulted from unwanted and unplanned pregnancies by both married and unmarried women of childbearing ages who, after becoming pregnant, visited quack health workers to terminate the pregnancies.

Illegal abortions responsible for mysterious deaths in Azare ?Bauchi?government reveals result of findings

He said the lack of understanding of the importance of child spacing as well as ignorance of what to do with such pregnancies had become a major problem to family health in the state.

He emphasized the need for adequate sex education for the girl-child by parents, particularly mothers, to reduce unwanted pregnancies, thereby reducing deaths from complications.

Davido Buys New Luxury Mansion In Banana Island (Videos)

Nigeria music star, Davido has gotten for himself a new mansion located in the Banana Island axis of Lagos.
In a series of videos shared via his Instagram stories on Friday, May 29, 2020, Davido took his friends on a guided tour of his new home.

The house which is located in the exclusive highbrow area of Lagos Island has a variety of interesting features.

One outstanding feature of Davido's new home is the private lift.

In one of the photos, Davido stated that he has always wanted a home with a private lift...we guess he put his money where his mouth is.

It is not clear how much the new crib costs, but the value of properties in the extremely exclusive area in Lagos cost billions of naira.

He earlier today joked about purchasing the house with this tweet:

See videos of the house below:

FG Breaks Silence On Online Portal For 774,000 Jobs For Unemployed Youths

The Federal Government says there is no online portal for unemployed youths to register for its 1,000 jobs per Local Government Area.
The Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo (SAN), stated this in a two-part tweet on Friday.

He said, “Some have asked me why there’s no registration portal for the 1000 jobs per LGA. My answer is, our real targets for these jobs are mostly unskilled rural workers who may not be literate enough and who can’t have access to any portal. The elites think everything is now by (the) internet.”

The minister added that the process would be transparent and the names of those enlisted on the scheme would be released to the public.

“Whilst it is inexpedient to ask largely illiterate, itinerant workers to go on the internet & register for jobs through a portal, we shall surely upload their full names and information after recruitment on a website for all to see. The monitoring process would be very transparent,” he added.

The PUNCH reports that the FG in a bid to curb the high rate of unemployment in the country rolled out a scheme known as the Special Public Works Programme in the Rural Areas, which would see unemployed youths in rural areas earn N20,000 per month across the 774 LGAs in the country.

The scheme, which is domiciled in the National Directorate of Employment for implementation, is expected to take off in October.

The youths would be engaged in the clearing of drainages, sweeping markets, road maintenance, traffic control, and cleaning of public infrastructures like health centres and schools.

“It is a dry season/off-season transient job programme and was originally designed for the rehabilitation/maintenance of public and social infrastructure. Participants were to be paid an allowance of N20,000 monthly and were to be recruited largely from the pool of unskilled persons resident in those rural areas.

“This pilot scheme was approved to be implemented in five local government areas in eight states namely: Adamawa, Borno, Ebonyi, Edo, Ekiti, Jigawa, Katsina and Kwara,” Keyamo explained.

Germany Blasts Donald Trump For Terminating Relationship With WHO

Germany on Saturday blasted US President Donald Trump’s decision to sever ties with the World Health Organization, describing it as “disappointing” and a setback for global health.
The WHO “needs reform” if it is to “make any difference”, Health Minister Jens Spahn said in a Tweet released in English, German and French.

“And the EU must take a leading role and engage more financially,” he said, adding this would be one of Germany’s priorities when it takes over the bloc’s rotating presidency on July 1.

Trump said Friday he was cutting US ties with the WHO, which he charged with failing to do enough to combat the initial spread of the novel coronavirus.

The president first suspended funding to the UN agency a month ago, accusing it of mishandling the global pandemic.

Then, earlier this month, he accused the Geneva-based WHO of being a “puppet” of China, and said the funding freeze would become permanent unless it made “substantive improvements”.

Spahn described Trump’s latest move as “a disappointing backlash for International Health.”

(AFP)

COVID-19: FG Raises Alarm Over Fake Test Kits

Efforts by the Federal Government to speed up testing for COVID-19 may have suffered a set- back after four units of Rapid Test Kits (RTKs) submitted to determine their efficacy failed to meet minimum requirements.
The implication is that Nigeria remains without an approved rapid test kit.

Government warned that anyone found marketing any type of RTKs would be sanctioned accordingly.

Nigeria’s confirmed cases shot up by 387 on Friday taking the total number of infections to 9302.

A breakdown of the new cases as released by the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) shows that Lagos State had 254 followed by  FCT with 29, Jigawa-24 , Edo-22 and Oyo -15.

The rest are: Rivers-14, Kaduna-11 ,Borno-6, Kano-3 ,Plateau-2 ,Yobe-2, Gombe-2, Bauchi-2, and  Ondo-1.

A total of 2697 have been discharged so far while 261 deaths have occurred.

In Cross River State, the government accused the federal authorities of  not supporting the state’s preventive efforts, which have made it the only state without any recorded case of coronavirus in the country.

Health Commissioner Betta Edu protested in Calabar that all the state was getting were pressure and knocks after doing “its best to prevent COVID 19.”

The Registrar/CEO of the Medical Laboratories Science Council of Nigeria (MLSCN), Dr. Tosan Erhabor, who gave an update on the validation of COVID-19 Rapid Test Kits (RTKs) said that the products examined “fell below the generally acceptable minimum for Invitro Diagnostics (IVD) sensitivity and specificity of 95 per cent).

“Therefore, none were approved for the purposes of diagnosis and surveillance in Nigeria.”

He said: “A total of 11 In-Vitro Diagnostics; one Polymerase Chain Reaction based kit, nine Rapid Test Kits (2 Antigen based and 7 Antibody based kits) and one Viral Transport Medium (VTM), were received for validation at the MLSCN Public Health In-Vitro Diagnostics Control Laboratory, Yaba, Lagos, Nigeria.

“However, out of the seven (7) antibody-based RTKs submitted for validation, only 4 of the RTKs met validation inclusion criteria. The validation of the PCR based kits and Antigen based Rapid Test Kits are ongoing.

“The test kits were evaluated based on sensitivity, specificity and accuracy. The first product scored 29, 94 and 45.8 per cent respectively. The second scored 51.4, 81.6 and 61 per cent; the third scored 22.1, 90.2, 49.2 per cent; while the fourth scored 37.7, 85.1 and 55.6 per cent.

“From the results, the performance characteristics of the four COVID-19 Rapid Test Kits validated fell below the generally acceptable minimum for Invitro Diagnostics (IVD) sensitivity and specificity of 95 per cent). Therefore, none were approved for the purposes of diagnosis and surveillance in Nigeria.

“It became clear from the standardised validation done by MLSCN that the manufacturers’ claims as contained in the product insert about Sensitivity, Specificity and Accuracy are not always correct.

“In this case, we observed a significant standard deviation, an indication that Rapid Test kits that are not validated poses higher risks of providing false positive and negative results.”

He said some manufacturers whose products failed the validation criteria agreed to re-work their RTKs for them to meet validation standards.

Once they are returned for fresh validation, the agency will examine them, he said.

Erhabor added: “Though all the Rapid Test kits validated fulfilled the requirement to perform laboratory test without the need of equipment and were able to produce results in less than twenty (20) minutes, however, for a rapid test kit to be deployed for disease surveillance and diagnosis, it must be able to detect a disease-causing agent when it is present and to return a negative result if the causative agent is absent.

“Therefore, for a kit to be considered reliable for laboratory diagnosis and disease surveillance, the kit should have a high sensitivity and specificity.

“A kit performing very well in one of these characteristics without the other renders it unsuitable for diagnostic testing. It is also unsuitable if both characteristics are low.

“The four kits in this report have not met the expected performance characteristics of sensitivity and specificity to qualify their deployment for the purposes of testing in disease surveillance and routine diagnosis.

“The four Rapid Test Kits validated so far are not approved for the purposes of diagnosis and surveillance of SARS-CoV-2 Infection in Nigeria. They are therefore not approved for marketing in Nigeria. No SARS-CoV-2 Rapid Test kit is currently approved for use in Nigeria.”

He warned against the use of any non-validated Rapid Test Kits for COVlD-19 testing in Nigeria.

Violations will attract sanctions,he said.

He also unveiled guidelines for private sector medical laboratories seeking to provide COVID-19 testing.

“Prospective Private Medical laboratories for COVlD-19 testing must be granted approval by MLSCN in collaboration with NCDC in accordance with this guidelines,” he said..

“However, those not granted this special approval and proceed to conduct COVlD-19 testing, will be considered to have contravened the provisions of Section 4 (h) of MLSCN Act ‘Medical Laboratories Regulations for Inspection, Approval, Monitoring and Accreditation,’ and will be sanctioned in line with the provisions of the said regulation.”

The Director-General of the NCDC, Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, explained that even if the rapid test kits are validated for use in Nigeria, it does not mean that the testing algorithm will shift from the gold standard – the PCR. At best, RTKs will just be a guide.

Represented by the Director of Laboratory Services of the NCDC, Mrs. Nwando Mba, he said: “The private sector is an important part of any nation’s economy and development.  In order for us to properly tackle the COVID-19 scourge, it is important that all hands be on deck.

“We  are bound  to  deploy the Gene Expert machine which is our third prong in the response to COVID-19 in Nigeria. We have received the Gene Expert in-country and what we have to do is to validate those Gene Experts and ensure that what they claim it is doing is what it will do for Nigerians. That will be our next phase.”
 
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