Edo Poll: We Must Be Neutral At All Times, INEC Chairman Tells Electoral Officials

INEC Chairman, Professor Mahmood Yakubu

 

Chairman of the Independent National Electoral Commission, Professor Mahmood Yakubu, has rallied officials of the commission to remain steadfast to its ideals in conducting the Edo governorship election.

“Nigerians and the international community expect so much from us. They are watching. It is important that we all remain above board in the performance of our respective duties,” Professor Yakubu said in a message to the staff of the commission on the eve of the election.

“We must ensure that no political party or candidate is accorded any advantage over the other. We must be neutral at all times and stick strictly to our Code of Conduct and Oath of Neutrality to which we have all subscribed.”

By playing their parts and delivering a free, fair, and credible election, the INEC boss believes the commission would have helped to better the country.

“For, at the end of the day, we would have all contributed to the sustenance of democracy and a strong electoral process that all Nigerians can trust,” he said.

Professor Mahmud who said all is set for the much-anticipated poll, promised his colleagues and other officials of the commission that their welfare and condition of service will be given priority during the election.

He is also confident that they will rise to the occasion.

“I have no doubt that our staff members will rise to the occasion. We have done it several times before and we can do it again,” he said.

“The Commission deeply appreciates the never-ending sacrifices made by our staff at all times, often beyond the call of duty, to ensure that we carry out our mandate. The management will continue to improve the welfare and conditions of service of staff within the available resources.”

Edo Election: Wike Alleges Police Siege On His Hotel

 

Rivers State Governor, Nyesom Wike, on Friday alleged a siege to his hotel in Benin City by the police, restricting his movement ahead of the governorship elections in the state.

The governor, who spoke exclusively to Channels TV says he is in the state to monitor the election on behalf of his party and insists he won’t leave the state.

He said, “As the Chairman of the National Campaign Council (of the PDP), I came in here with some of my colleagues; I was in the hotel. Around 2 o’clock in the afternoon, the IG (Inspector General of Police) called.

“I think they called my orderly; I don’t know how they got his number and then I spoke with the IG and he said I must leave Edo State. I said ‘for what?’ He said because my being here may cause a crisis. I said how will it cause crisis? He said because I made a statement that is inflammatory. I said ‘which statement did I make? That we should be extra vigilant? That people should protect their votes?’ So, ‘what is the inflammatory statement I made?’”

Maintaining that he had done no wrong, the governor told the IGP, he won’t leave the state.

According to him, about 10 minutes after he refused to leave the state, over 300 policemen had surrounded his hotel.

Governor Wike said regardless of the siege, he won’t leave the state because he is Chairman of the PDP national campaign council and is not the only governor in Edo for the election.

“The governor of Kano is here, the governor of Imo is here, the Deputy Senate President is here,” he said. “So why will you tell me to leave?” All three men Governor Wike mentioned are members of the All Progressives Congress.

The governor decried the said call by the IGP, describing it as “the highest level of impunity”.

Police React

Meanwhile, the Edo State Commissioner of Police, Johnson Kokumo, told Channels TV that the police are making sure that there is peace in the state and will resist any act of violence.

He said, “The police don’t have to lay siege on anyone, but the situation is that no matter the status of the citizen of Nigeria in Nigeria, we will ensure that we do all within our capacity to create a conducive atmosphere for free, fair, credible elections.

“People having no business within Edo State cannot be moving from one point to another. Movement is restricted. For the purpose of this election, movement is restricted. The restriction commences from midnight to 18:00 hours tomorrow when we believe that election would have been concluded. Nobody is empowered to move about, whether you are a governor or not.”

How To Cast Your Vote In Seven Steps

APC Excluded As INEC Publishes Names Of Rivers Senatorial Candidates
A file photo of a ballot box.

 

The Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) has put out the steps on how to vote in the Edo election.

It is important to note that you are qualified to vote if you are a registered voter and your name appears on the register of voters at your polling.

Here are the seven steps to casting your ballot, according to INEC:

Step 1:

At the polling unit, join the queue. An INEC official will check if you are at the correct polling unit and confirm that the PVC presented belongs to you.

Step 2:

An INEC official will confirm if your PVC is genuine using the card reader. You will be asked to place your finger on the card reader.

Step 3:

An INEC official will ask for your PVC and confirm you are listed in the Voters Register. Your name will be ticked and your finger will be inked to confirm you have voted. If your name is not found you cannot vote.

Step 4:

The Presiding officer will stamp, sign and endorse your ballot paper. You will be given the ballot paper rolled with the printed side inwards and directed to the voting cubicle.

Step 5:

Stain your finger with the ink given and mark the box for your preferred candidate/party. Roll the ballot paper in the manner you were given and flatten it.

Step 6:

Leave the voting cubicle and drop the ballot paper in the ballot box in full view of people at the Polling Unit.

Step 7:

Leave the Polling Unit or wait if you so choose, in an orderly and peaceful manner, to watch the process up to the declaration of result.

COVID-19: How INEC Plans To Keep Voters Safe During The Edo Election

A health worker is seen wearing a PPE amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Independent National Electoral Commission’s decision to hold elections during the coronavirus pandemic has been greeted by skepticism in some quarters.

However, the Commission has published health guidelines it hopes will help keep voters and officials safe throughout the exercise.

On Saturday, these guidelines will be put to use in Edo state, for the first time in a major election since the pandemic took root.

According to INEC, infrared thermometers will be supplied and used at the Registration Area Collation Centres, the Local Government Area Collation Centres, and the State Collation Centres.

The use of face masks has also been made mandatory for all involved in the election process and must be worn at all election locations.

The Commission also says it will provide face masks for all election officials.

Alcohol-based hand sanitizers are expected to be provided for election officials at the polling units.

Methylated Spirit and cotton wool will be provided for the disinfection of the Smart Card Readers (SCRs) after the fingerprint of each voter is read.

The rules of physical distancing, the Commission says, will be enforced at all election activities including stakeholder engagements, training, queuing at Polling Units, etc.

Meanwhile, all protocols issued by the NCDC, Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, State Committees on COVID-19, and other relevant health authorities are expected to be observed by election officials and all stakeholders.

 

Liverpool Sign Bayern Munich’s Thiago For $26 Million

 In this file photo taken on October 14, 2017 Bayern Munich's Spanish midfielder Thiago Alcantara celebrates after scoring the 3-0 during the German First division Bundesliga football match FC Bayern Munich vs SC Freiburg in Munich, southern Germany. Liverpool announced the signing of Thiago Alcantara from Bayern Munich on Friday, September 18. Christof STACHE / AFP
In this file photo taken on October 14, 2017 Bayern Munich’s Spanish midfielder Thiago Alcantara celebrates after scoring the 3-0 during the German First division Bundesliga football match FC Bayern Munich vs SC Freiburg in Munich, southern Germany. Christof STACHE / AFP

 

Liverpool signed Spain midfielder Thiago Alcantara from Bayern Munich for a reported fee of £20 million ($26 million) on Friday.

Thiago agreed a “long-term contract” with the Premier League champions after deciding to end his seven-year stay with Bayern.

The 29-year-old moves to Anfield after helping Bayern win the Bundesliga, the German Cup and Champions League last season.

“I think it’s an amazing feeling. I was waiting for this moment for a long time and I am very happy to be here,” Thiago told Liverpool’s website.

 

 

AFP

COVID-19 Deaths Rise In France

A man has a PCR test for the novel coronavirus at a medical laboratory in Paris amids the Covid-19 pandemic on September 4, 2020. Christophe ARCHAMBAULT / AFP

 

The numbers of deaths in France of people diagnosed with Covid-19 is trending upwards for the first time since the end of its lockdown, the public health agency said Friday, warning that all coronavirus indicators were now worsening. 

While a recent surge of infections mostly affected the young, infections are also growing fast among the over-75s.

Admissions to hospital and intensive care wards are also increasing, the health agency added.

“For the first time since the lifting of the (March-May) lockdown, we are seeing an increase in Covid-19 deaths,” the agency said in its weekly update, saying 265 people had died from the virus this week compared with 129 the last.

“The intensification of the spread of the virus among the oldest age group raises fears of the continuation of hospitalisations and deaths in the weeks to come,” it warned.

The number of new infections was down slightly — by eight percent — from the previous week. But the agency warned that this was likely an “underestimate” of infections due to saturation of testing capacity in certain regions.

There is growing concern in France about how hard it is to get a coronavirus test — especially in the Paris region — due to demand. Prime Minister Jean Castex admitted last week it had to do better.

“Not being able to test people (who may need quarantine)… may have an impact on the control of the outbreak,” said Daniel Levy-Bruhl, head of the respiratory infections unit at the agency.

Health Minister Olivier Veran said Thursday that France is preparing tighter restrictions in several cities to curtail a surge in Covid-19 cases after daily infections topped 10,000 twice over the last week.

French Health Minister Olivier Veran wearing a protective mask arrives before addressing media representatives during a press conference at The Ministry of Health in Paris on September 17, 2020, on the situation of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) in France. GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT / AFP
French Health Minister Olivier Veran wearing a protective mask arrives before addressing media representatives during a press conference at The Ministry of Health in Paris on September 17, 2020, on the situation of the novel coronavirus (Covid-19) in France. GEOFFROY VAN DER HASSELT / AFP

 

The French Riviera city of Nice, still basking in a late Mediterranean summer, on Friday announced restrictions including a maximum of 10 people allowed to gather in its parks and on its beaches.

It will be forbidden to buy or consume alcohol in public in the city after 8:00 pm while bars can no longer open all night.

According to the latest figures, the pandemic has claimed the lives of 31,095 people in France.

Despite the alarming figures, Castex last week steered clear of announcing new nationwide restrictions, saying the French should use caution and “succeed in living with this virus”.

 

AFP

US Bans TikTok, WeChat

 In this file photo illustration taken on August 03, 2020, the social media application logo, TikTok is displayed on the screen of an iPhone on an US flag as the background in Arlington, Virginia. Olivier DOULIERY / AFP
In this file photo illustration taken on August 03, 2020, the social media application logo, TikTok is displayed on the screen of an iPhone on an US flag as the background in Arlington, Virginia. Olivier DOULIERY / AFP

 

The United States on Friday ordered a ban on downloads of popular Chinese-owned video app TikTok and use of the messaging and payment platform WeChat, saying they threaten national security.

The move, to be implemented Sunday night, comes amid rising US-China tensions and efforts by the Trump administration to engineer a sale of TikTok to American investors.

“The Chinese Communist Party has demonstrated the means and motives to use these apps to threaten the national security, foreign policy, and the economy of the US,” Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in a statement.

The initiative would ban WeChat, an app with massive use among Chinese speakers, and TikTok from the online marketplaces operated by Apple and Google.

But while WeChat will effectively be shut down in the US from Sunday night, existing TikTok users will be able to continue using the app until November 12 — when it would also face a full ban on its US operations.

TikTok’s brand of brief, quirky phone videos has become hugely popular, especially among young people, with 100 million users in the US alone — and its use has further soared among teens stuck at home through the coronavirus pandemic.

As of Sunday night, Ross told Fox news, TikTok users will not have access to improved apps, updated apps, upgraded apps, or maintenance.

“So if that were to continue over a long period of time there might be a gradual degradation of services. But the basic TikTok will stay intact until November 12th,” he said.

“If there’s not a deal by November 12th under the provisions of the old order, then TikTok… would be, for all practical purposes, shut down,” Ross added.

The Commerce Department said if concerns over TikTok were resolved before then, the order may be lifted.

Pressure grows for a deal

Owned by Chinese giant Tencent, WeChat is widely used among the Chinese diaspora to keep in touch with people back home.

The US ban on WeChat has potential for disrupting the widely used application, but does not affect its service in China where the app is much more widely used.

The clampdown follows through on a threat by President Donald Trump, who has claimed Chinese tech operations may be used for spying.

In this file photo illustration taken on July 24, 2019, shows the logo of the Chinese instant messaging application WeChat on the screen of a tablet, in Paris. Martin BUREAU / AFP
In this file photo illustration taken on July 24, 2019, shows the logo of the Chinese instant messaging application WeChat on the screen of a tablet, in Paris. Martin BUREAU / AFP

 

It also ramps up the pressure on TikTok parent ByteDance to conclude a deal to sell all or part of TikTok to allay US security concerns.

A deal which appeared to be taking shape would allow Silicon Valley giant Oracle to become the tech partner for TikTok, but some US lawmakers have objected to allowing ByteDance to keep a stake.

The TikTok saga has seen several twists as the US gears up for the November 3 presidential election, with Microsoft seen initially as the suitor before its bid was rejected.

Trump is searching for a breakthrough with voters as polls show him facing an uphill battle to win a second term.

He has increasingly put national security and his aggressive stance towards China at the center of his campaign strategy, regularly accusing Democratic opponent Joe Biden of weakness towards Beijing.

Trump tweeted late Thursday that Biden had “cheered the rise of China as a ‘positive development’ for America and the world.”

Trump had previously demanded a significant portion of any TikTok sale go to the US government, but admitted this week that was not possible.

“Lawyers come back to me and they say there is no way of doing that because nobody has ever heard of that before,” he said.

 

AFP

Senator Reveals Major Problem Confronting Nigerian Police

 

The Chairman of the Senate Committee on Police Affairs, Haliru Jika on Friday identified a lack of funding as the number one problem hampering the Nigeria Police Force.

Jika revealed this during an appearance on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily.

“The main problem of the Nigerian police is funding, funding, funding,” he said.

In a 2019 survey, the Nigerian police were identified as the most corrupt public institution in the country.

On Thursday, President Muhammadu Buhari signed, into law, the Nigeria Police Bill 2020.

The act is expected to establish an “appropriate funding framework for the police”, according to a statement from the Presidency.

Along with the Police Trust Fund act, which received presidential assent in 2019, Jika believes the new law will help to improve police finances.

Ford Foundation Director in West Africa, Innocent Chukwuma, who also appeared on Sunrise Daily, said the act was a “welcome development” although it won’t solve all the problems bedeviling the police.

While noting that he was yet to sight the version of the bill signed by the President, he said the new law will help to address the issue of fundamental rights, as it relates to police operations.

One of the issues the bill addresses is the setting of a term-limit for the Inspector-General of Police to four years.

Previously, the President appointed and fired the police chief at will.

However, Chukwuma lamented the lack of oversight on the appointment of the IGP.

Under the new law (the version from the National Assembly seen by Chukwuma), the President retained the power to unilaterally appoint the IGP, with the Police Council only serving in an advisory role.

Trump Insists COVID-19 Vaccine To Be Ready By October, Contradicts Top Expert

US President Donald Trump speaks during a press conference in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House on September 16, 2020, in Washington, DC. MANDEL NGAN / AFP
US President Donald Trump speaks during a press conference in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House on September 16, 2020, in Washington, DC. MANDEL NGAN / AFP

 

President Donald Trump expressed renewed confidence Wednesday that a viable Covid-19 vaccine would be ready by October, directly contradicting a top administration health expert and facing fierce criticism from his Democratic election rival Joe Biden.

Trump sowed confusion about the issue with an extraordinary public rebuke of one of his top health experts who said masks were a leading weapon for fighting the pandemic and that a vaccine was unlikely to be widely available until mid-2021.

“I think he made a mistake when he said that. That’s just incorrect information,” Trump told reporters referring to Senate testimony by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention director Robert Redfield.

“We’re very close to that vaccine as you know… We think we can start sometime in October” or shortly thereafter, Trump said.

“I believe he was confused,” he said of Redfield. “I am just telling you we are ready to go as soon as the vaccine happens.”

Redfield told lawmakers Wednesday that a “very limited” distribution to priority groups including first responders could begin in November and December, but that full implementation would take many more months at least.

“I think we’re probably looking at late second quarter, third quarter 2021” before a safe and effective vaccine would be available to the general public, he added.

Redfield tweeted his support for a potential vaccine Wednesday evening, but cautioned Americans to be vigilant about mitigating viral spread in the meantime.

“The best defense we currently have against this virus are the important mitigation efforts of wearing a mask, washing your hands, social distancing and being careful about crowds. #COVID19”

The contradiction between Trump and health experts on an issue that has become a focal point of the 2020 election campaign highlighted the lack of trust Biden said he and the public have in the president’s handling of the pandemic, which has killed nearly 200,000 Americans.

“When I said I trust vaccines, and I trust the scientists, but I don’t trust Donald Trump — this is what I meant,” Biden tweeted after Trump’s remarks.

Barely an hour earlier the Democratic nominee said Trump’s refusal to take key steps to tackle the pandemic, like instituting national guidelines on social distancing and testing, were “utterly disqualifying” for the presidency.

The Democratic nominee, speaking after receiving a briefing by public health experts, said he supported a rapid Covid-19 vaccine to help American life return to normal, but said the process should be guided by science and safety, not politics.

‘He’s the president’

On Tuesday Trump accelerated his own already optimistic predictions, saying a vaccine may be available even before the November 3 presidential election.

“We’re within weeks of getting it, you know — could be three weeks, four weeks,” he told a town hall question-and-answer session with voters in Pennsylvania aired on ABC.

Democrats have expressed concern that Trump is pressuring government health regulators and scientists to approve a rushed vaccine in time to help his uphill bid for reelection.

Trump also raised eyebrows when asked at the town hall why he had downplayed the gravity of the pandemic in its early months.

“I didn’t downplay it,” Trump replied. “I actually, in many ways, I up-played it in terms of action.”

US President Donald Trump speaks to the media as he makes his way to board Air Force One before departing from Andrews Air Force Base in Maryland on September 1, 2020, heading to Kenosha, Wisconsin to meet with law enforcement officials and to survey damage following civil unrest in the city. MANDEL NGAN / AFP

 

But Trump himself told journalist Bob Woodward during taped interviews that he had deliberately decided to “play it down” to avoid alarming Americans.

The president, who is rarely seen wearing a mask in public and long refused to push Americans to adopt the habit, told the town hall that “a lot of people don’t want to wear masks and people don’t think masks are good.”

The comment caught wide flak, including from Biden, who also knocked Trump for saying the Democrat declined to institute a mask mandate.

“I’m not the president, he’s the president,” Biden whispered into the microphone.

Trump’s anti-mask message got a dressing down of sorts by Redfield too, as the CDC director held up a medical mask to senators and said “I might go so far as to say that this facemask is more guaranteed to protect me against Covid than when I take a Covid vaccine.”

Trump rejected the assertion outright, and noted that he called Redfield to ask him what he meant.

“I think there are a lot of problems with masks,” Trump said. “It’s not more effective than a vaccine.”

Biden routinely appears at campaign events wearing a mask, and usually takes it off to deliver a speech. Trump, who is trailing in pre-election polling, has mocked Biden for wearing a mask.

Polls show a majority of Americans disapprove of Trump’s handling of the pandemic.

 

AFP

Bale Close To Tottenham Return, Says Agent

Wales' forward Gareth Bale attends a training session at The Vale Resort near Hensol in South Wales on August 31, 2020 ahead of their UEFA Nations League international football match against Finland. GEOFF CADDICK / AFP
Wales’ forward Gareth Bale attends a training session at The Vale Resort near Hensol in South Wales on August 31, 2020 ahead of their UEFA Nations League international football match against Finland. GEOFF CADDICK / AFP

 

Gareth Bale is “close” to sealing a sensational move back to Tottenham, the player’s agent Jonathan Barnett said on Wednesday, seven years after joining the Spanish giants from Spurs for a world record fee.

The Wales international has been frozen out by Real manager Zinedine Zidane and said earlier this month he was open to returning to the Premier League.

Bale twice won Premier League Players’ Player of the Year during his first spell at Tottenham, which saw him score 56 goals in 203 appearances and lure Madrid into paying a then world-record £85 million ($132 million, 100 million euros) for his services.

READ ALSO: Real Madrid Making It ‘Very Difficult’ To Leave – Bale

When asked about Tottenham’s move for Bale, Barnett told AFP: “It’s close but not done.” He added: “It’s a complicated deal.”

Bale has two years left on a contract that pays him around 30 million euros a year at Real Madrid.

Madrid are pushing for a permanent transfer, while Spurs would prefer a loan move that involves the Spanish champions covering a portion of the 31-year-old’s wages.

According to reports in England, Tottenham are set to pay £13 million of Bale’s salary for a year-long loan.

Bale joined Madrid the summer that Jose Mourinho left the Spanish giants, but the Tottenham manager said he had tried to sign him during his spell as Real boss.

“I tried to sign him during my time at Real Madrid and the president followed my instinct and knowledge and the season I left, he brought Gareth to the club,” Mourinho said in a press conference on Wednesday. “That’s no secret and Gareth knows that.”

Turbulent relationship

Bale has won the Champions League four times, scoring in the 2014 and 2018 final, and won two La Liga titles at Madrid, but his time at the club is largely viewed as an expensive failure in Spain.

Bale reacts during the Spanish League football match between Valencia CF and Real Madrid, at the Mestalla stadium in Valencia, on December 15, 2019. JOSE JORDAN / AFP

 

Real president Florentino Perez’s plan for Bale to take over the mantle as Madrid’s talisman from Cristiano Ronaldo never materialised as his role has significantly reduced under Zidane since Ronaldo left the club two years ago.

Bale started just one match when the 2019/20 season resumed after the coronavirus hiatus and caused a stir with his behaviour while he watched on in the stands.

The winger still has an emotional attachment to Tottenham after joining the club from Southampton as a teenager, where he developed from a left-back into one of the world’s most exciting forwards.

Former Spurs boss Harry Redknapp, who managed Bale for four years at Tottenham, said he would bring “that little bit of magic” to Mourinho’s side, who lost their first game of the Premier League season to Everton.

“It would be a fantastic signing for the club,” Redknapp told BBC Radio Wales. “It would be great for Gareth to get back playing again. He’s such a talent, such a great player. It’s a waste to see him not playing.”

Bale’s return to playing regularly in the Premier League would also be a boost for Wales manager Ryan Giggs with Euro 2020 to come at the end of the season.

Tottenham are also close to completing the signing of Real Madrid left-back Sergio Reguilon for around 30 million euros.

Reguilon enjoyed an excellent season for Madrid in 2018/19 but Zidane sent the 23-year-old on loan last year to Sevilla, where he helped them finish fourth in La Liga and win the Europa League.

A buy-back clause is expected to be inserted into the deal, which would allow Real to re-sign Reguilon from Spurs in the next two years.

 

AFP

Anger In Osun As Police Chase Suspected ‘Yahoo Boys’ To Death

A file photo of a police van.

 

A joint police task force on Tuesday was given a hot chase by aggrieved persons after an accident in Osogbo, the Osun state capital, according to eyewitnesses.

The accident involved three suspected internet fraudsters, who were being chased by the police unit.

The incident occurred on Tuesday evening at the East bypass when the Toyota Corolla with registration number KUJ-553LY Abuja veered off the road during the chase and hit an electricity pole.

One of the victims gave up the ghost instantly while two others out of the three who sustained serious injuries later died while they were taking away.

Eyewitnesses said the police officers were given a hot chase by sympathisers while running away after the incident.

They were said to have been shooting sporadically into the air to be able to escape jungle justice.

The Osun state police spokesman could not be immediately reached for comment on the matter.

Nigeria Records 90 New Cases Of COVID-19, Five More Deaths

A graphic displaying the nation's COVID-19 statistics as of September 15,. 2020
A graphic displaying the nation’s COVID-19 statistics as of September 15,. 2020

 

Nigeria on Tuesday recorded 90 new cases of the novel coronavirus, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control said.

In a late-night tweet, the health agency also confirmed the country reported five new deaths as a result of the virus, within the last 24 hours.

The new figures put the country’s total caseload at 56,478, with 44,430 cases discharged and 1,088 deaths.

According to the NCDC, the 90 new cases were reported from eight states, with Lagos (33) leading the pack.

Other states with new cases include Plateau (27), Kaduna (17), Ogun (6), FCT (4), Anambra (1), Ekiti (1), and Nasarawa (1).

 

Global Update

The novel coronavirus has killed at least 929,391 people since the outbreak emerged in China last December, according to a tally from official sources compiled by AFP at 1100 GMT on Tuesday.

At least 29,329,390 cases of coronavirus have been registered. Of these, at least 19,536,900 are now considered recovered.

The tallies, using data collected by AFP from national authorities and information from the World Health Organization (WHO), probably reflect only a fraction of the actual number of infections.

Many countries are testing only symptomatic or the most serious cases.

On Monday, 4,433 new deaths and 269,352 new cases were recorded worldwide. Based on latest reports, the countries with the most new deaths were India with 1,054 new deaths, followed by United States with 410 and Brazil with 381.

The United States is the worst-hit country with 194,545 deaths from 6,555,243 cases. At least 2,474,570 people have been declared recovered.

After the US, the hardest-hit countries are Brazil with 132,006 deaths from 4,345,610 cases, India with 80,776 deaths from 4,930,236 cases, Mexico with 71,049 deaths from 671,716 cases, and United Kingdom with 41,637 deaths from 371,125 cases.

The country with the highest number of deaths compared to its population is Peru with 93 fatalities per 100,000 inhabitants, followed by Belgium (86), Spain 64, Bolivia 63, and Chile 63.

China — excluding Hong Kong and Macau — has to date declared 85,202 cases (8 new since Monday), including 4,634 deaths and 80,426 recoveries.

Latin America and the Caribbean overall has recorded 312,071 deaths from 8,330,243 cases, Europe 222,016 deaths from 4,560,434 infections, with the United States and Canada 203,756 deaths from 6,692,491 cases.

In Asia, there have been 117,436 deaths from 6,648,236 cases, in the Middle East 40,443 deaths from 1,705,035 cases, and in Africa 32,793 deaths from 1,362,280 cases. In Oceania there have been 876 deaths from 30,671 cases.

As a result of corrections by national authorities or late publication of data, the figures updated over the past 24 hours may not correspond exactly to the previous day’s tallies.