Nigeria Records 464 New COVID-19 Cases, 16 More Deaths

A file photo of a healthcare worker holding a COVID-19 test kit. TARSO SARRAF / AFP


Nigeria has continued to witness new cases of coronavirus (COVID-19) below the 500 mark for the sixth consecutive day as the death toll inches towards 2,000.

This comes as the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) says 464 new infections were confirmed in various parts of the country on Wednesday.

In an early-morning tweet on Thursday, the NCDC which is responsible for the management of disease outbreaks in Nigeria noted that the new cases were recorded in 21 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Of the states, Lagos was the only place where cases above the 100 mark were reported – 131, followed by Kaduna, Akwa Ibom, and Imo where 69, 33, and 31 more infections were reported.

Other states were Katsina – 30, Kano – 26, Ondo – 23, Yobe – 20, FCT – 18, Ogun – 13, Rivers – 12, Kebbi – 11, Ekiti – nine, Osun – six, Oyo – six, Borno – five, Gombe – five, Plateau – five, Edo – four. Abia – three, Delta – three, and Zamfara – one.

According to the health agency, the country recorded 16 more fatalities on Wednesday, raising the death toll from the disease to 1,939.

On the other hand, the nation’s discharged figure has continued to increase following the recovery of 1,280 more patients.

Data from the NCDC revealed that Nigeria has confirmed a total of 156,963 cases with 135,831 cases discharged across the 36 states and the FCT.

As of 9am on March 4, 2021, the country has tested 1,544,008 samples while 19,212 cases are active.

See the breakdown of cases according to states below:

States AffectedNo. of Cases (Lab Confirmed)No. of Cases (on admission)No. DischargedNo. of Deaths
Akwa Ibom1,55258395514
Cross River3344327417

Insecurity: Allow Regional Security System To Function, Peter Obi Tells FG


The former vice presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) and ex-Anambra State Governor, Peter Obi, has asked the Federal Government to allow states to operate their regional security system.

Speaking during an interview on Channels Television’s Newsnight, Obi said the move would help curb the myriads of security challenges the country faces.

“Allow some region-like state security system to function. The government has to come out genuinely to tackle the issue of security of lives and properties by investing in them,” he said.

“I served as a governor and when I found out that we had a security issue, I decided that every community in Anambra State must have their own security outfit funded and supported by the government.

“If you go to Anambra State, every community has a pickup for security. In fact, some own two or three. A community like Nnewi owns four or five because it is critical.”

For Nigeria to surmount the several challenges and become better, Obi said the nation needs to restructure.

Former PDP vice presidential candidate in the 2019 general elections, Peter Obi, speaks during an interview on Channels TV’s Newsnight on March 1, 2021.


He explained that his call for the nation’s restructuring is imperative because it appears the systems that have been operated over times isn’t producing the needed result.

READ ALSO: We Will See Better Security In Nigeria, Presidency Assures Nigerians

When asked what should be done to prevent further loss of lives in the country, the PDP chieftain reiterated his call for regional security architecture.

He explained that for the citizens to be safe, communities should have a network that will effectively guarantee their security, noting that it is the best approach.

“Just support every community, let governments of the states support every community. There is no better protection or security you can have within a community than those communities being in charge of their own security because they know the criminals.

“They know those who are foreigners in their community, so it is very easy. You can’t come to my village and provide a better community than my villagers,” he added.

COVID-19: Nigeria Might Soon Exit Second Wave – Minister

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire.


The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, has hinted that Nigeria might soon exit the second wave of the coronavirus disease.

Speaking during a briefing by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 on Monday, the Minister said the country has been recording a decline in the number of COVID-19 cases.

He also observed decreased positivity rate from sustained testing in states, which according to him is synonymous with global trends.

“This trend in reduction compares with global observations of seeming decline in COVID-19 cases, signifying that the second wave may be receding,” he said.

“On 21st of February 2021, 521 new infections and 8 deaths occurred in 20 states. The sustained testing in states has decreased positively rate.

“We are, however, not drawing conclusions yet and certainly not declaring victory, but rather watching developments as they unfold nationally and internationally, ready to make use of comparative advantages that may emerge.”

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Nigeria To Receive Four Million Doses Of AstraZeneca Vaccine Very Soon – FG

The Minister also spoke of an outbreak of the Ebola virus disease in Guinea, noting that the Federal Government is closely monitoring the situation.

He also stated that the Nigerian government is collaborating with the West African Health Organization (WAHO).

“Nigeria is closely observing developments on the outbreak of Ebola virus disease in Guinea and working with West African Health Organization (WAHO) to contain it in the outbreak country of Guinea and prevent the spread to other countries in the region.

“We are pleased to note that the ECOWAS countries adjacent to the epicenter are taking strict measures with regard checking movement of persons,” the Minister added.

Ehanire explained that Port Health Service officers have been on high alert to step up border surveillance of travellers arriving by air or overland from destinations around the outbreak country  to avert disease importation.

He explained that although Nigeria has been classified as a moderate Ebola risk country because of its distance from Guinea, health workers have been directed to report suspicious symptoms, including fever and bleeding in the community, among recent arrivals from the West African subregion.

The Minister also advised Nigerians intending to visit countries in the general area, to delay the visit.

Kagara Abduction: Gov. Matawalle Hints At Location Of Kidnapped Students

Government Science Secondary School, Kagara, in Niger State was attacked by gunmen on February 17, 2021.
Schools have been targeted by kidnappers in Nigeria.


Zamfara State Governor, Bello Matawalle has hinted at the location of the abducted students of Government Science Secondary School, Kagara in Niger State. 

“The students of Kagara are located around  Birnin Gwari in Kaduna State which I believe very soon they would be back home,” the governor said in an interview on Channels Television’s Sunday Politics.

Governor Matawalle also harped on cooperation from stakeholders and believes it is the key to unlock success in the country’s fight against criminality.

“As you are aware, the security issue needs more commitment from all stakeholders. We have two major problems of insecurity in the north with banditry and Boko Haram,” the governor elected on the platform of the People’s Democratic Party (PDP) explained.

“The security operatives are doing their best but we must all put our hands on deck to succeed. Another issue is that all the leaders who are stakeholders must come to terms with the challenges at hand and speak with one voice.”

READ ALSO: Two Killed, Seven Children Injured In Kaduna

Gunmen had on Wednesday attacked the school in Kagara, killing one student and abducting others including teachers and their relatives.

In the attack which started from the staff quarters and ended in the students’ hostels, some students were also wounded by gunshots.

The gunmen gathered some staff and students at a place for hours before moving them out of the school premises to an unknown destination.

They wore military uniform and entered the school premises which has about 1000 students, overpowered the security guard, before whisking away the students and staff.

A Marching Order

Governor  Abubakar Sani Bello of Niger State had in the wake of the attack, ordered the closure of all boarding schools in the bandits-ravaged areas of the state. He explained that the move was to forestall a similar incident in the northcentral state.

File photo of Governor Abubakar Bello of Niger State.


And as efforts to rescue the abducted students intensify, President Muhammadu Buhari also directed Nigeria’s security agencies to ensure the safe return of the schoolboys.

“Following these reports, the President has directed the Armed Forces and Police, to ensure the immediate and safe return of all the captives,” a statement from the Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, noted.

“The President has also dispatched to Minna, Niger State a team of security chiefs to coordinate the rescue operation and meet with state officials, community leaders, as well as parents and staff of the College.”


‘AK-47 Is A Figure Of Speech’: Gov. Bala Mohammed Defends Comment About Armed Herdsmen

Governor Bala Mohammed of Bauchi State on Friday defended his comment about armed herders, explaining that he used AK-47 as a figure of speech for protection.

“It is a figure of speech to show you the despondence, the desperation and frustration and the agony that this particular person is exposed to by his own people, by his own tribe and by other tribes who have all seen him as a criminal and therefore, he has the inalienable right to protect himself,” the governor said during an interview on Channels Television’s Sunrise Daily. 

Governor Bala argues that herdsmen are exposed and need to protect themselves.


“What I said in that context, I was addressing the media people. And the topic was the use of the media to foster national unity and I was trying to situate the problem,” the former Minister of Federal Capital Territory (FCT) explained.

“The Fulani man is so exposed, dehumanised, demonised in fact, because he is being seen as a bandit and so, anywhere he goes, he is being pursued. Not only in the southwest or the southeast, even in the north because he is in the cattle route, his commonwealth which I call his cows, are being taken and rustled and of course, sometimes, they are fined beyond your imagination.

“If one cow strays into the farm because the cattle route has been taken away illegally without the authority giving permission, he will be fined seriously, mercilessly.

“And so, he is exposed and then he has no option but to protect himself. We have so many vigilante groups in Nigeria even at the level of government, subregional groups, sub nationals are establishing vigilante groups to make sure that their communities are protected.

“Why wouldn’t the Fulani man protect himself? And if he carries a gun in order to protect himself, it may not be a legal carriage, it may be legal. He may also register and carry it to protect himself.”

A Flurry Of Condemnation

The governor’s comment on armed herdsmen triggered a wave of condemnation from his counterparts and Nigerians alike, increasing calls for the prohibition of open-grazing.

Clashes between herdsmen and farmers have been an age-long issue in Nigeria. LUIS TATO / AFP


READ ALSO: Herders Have No Option Other Than To Carry AK-47, Bala Mohammed Condemns Ortom, Others

Governor Samuel Ortom of Benue State and his Ondo counterpart, Rotimi Akeredolu, were quick to knock the Bauchi governor’s statement. Akeredolu had described it as uncalled for, arguing that it could further escalate tensions in the West African nation.

Governor Bala’s comment on armed herders had generated heated debates in Nigeria.


“For what purpose? Bala Mohammed has even poured more petrol into the fire because his speech is unexpected of him. It will become very serious and nobody will be spared,” Akeredolu, a former President of the Nigerian Bar Association (NBA), noted.

“So statements like that must be condemned and I condemn it. Bala Mohammed has not spoken like a statesman. He probably lost everything out, he lost out as to what his reaction should be.”

READ ALSO: [Kagara Abductions] We Are Committed To The Safe Rescue Of All Abductees – IGP

Ortom, on his part, questioned the section of the law the Bauchi governor cited to support herdsmen’s free movement around the country with sophisticated weapons.

“It was the same Governor Mohammed who once said on national television that a Fulani man is a global citizen and therefore does not need a visa to come to Nigeria and that the forests belong to herdsmen,” Ortom stated as he poked at Bala political ideology.

Herdsmen and farmers clashes have been an age-long phenomenon in the country. Locals, especially farmers, in the southern part of Nigeria accuse the herdsmen – mostly from the northern region of the country – of committing violent crimes, such as rape, killing and kidnapping. 

But the herders deny any wrongdoing, arguing that they are being profiled, exposed to danger and their cows constantly rustled.

WTO: Okonjo-Iweala Has Brought Honour To Nigeria, Africa – Lawan

In this file photo taken on September 19, 2016 former Finance Minster of Nigeria Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala looks on during the Opening Plenary Session: "Partnering for Global Prosperity," at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York. Bryan R. Smith / AFP
File photo of former Finance Minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala Credit: Bryan R. Smith / AFP


Senate President, Ahmad Lawan has congratulated former Finance Minister, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala on her emergence as the Director-General of the World Trade Organisation, saying she has brought more honour to Nigeria and Africa.

Lawan in a statement issued on Monday by his spokesman, Ola Awoniyi, also congratulated “Nigeria on the latest feat of its great daughter on the international stage.”

“I heartily rejoice with Dr Okonjo-Iweala on this well-deserved victory. With her latest feat, the former Nigerian Minister of Finance and Managing Director of the World Bank has again brought honour to Nigeria, Africa and women everywhere,” Lawan was quoted as saying.

The Senate President applauded President Muhammadu Buhari for standing behind her candidacy in getting the WTO top job.

He also acknowledged Okonjo-Iweala’s sterling credentials and her ultimate triumph in the prolonged contest for the very important position.

Lawan urged the new Director-General to “deploy her famed intellect, experience, energy and integrity in leading the WTO to promote global prosperity through fair trade.”

According to the Senate President, her task has been made even more onerous by the havoc that the COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked on economies across the world.

He also prayed that the Almighty God would imbue her with good health and wisdom to succeed in the task.

Presidency Should Be Zoned To Southern Nigeria, Says Ganduje

Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje speaks during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today which aired on February 12, 2021.


Ahead of the 2023 general elections, Kano State Governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, says a presidential slot should be given to the southern region.

Ganduje stated this in Kano during an interview with Channels Television’s Politics Today which aired on Friday.

“The Southern part of the country but there should be a consensus of the members,” he said in reaction to which zone should produce the 2023 presidency.

“Zoning system even though it is not in the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, it is a strategy for winning elections.”

When asked if the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC) has done well for Nigerians since sweeping to power in 2015, the governor replied in the affirmative.

He said the APC under President Muhammadu Buhari’s leadership improved on Nigeria’s security situation as well as fixing the nation’s economy.

READ ALSO: Progressive Governors’ Forum Faults Fani-Kayode’s Planned Defection To APC

Ganduje is therefore confident that the ruling party would win the 2023 general election and maintain its winning streak by holding to power at the federal level.

“I think in 2023, APC will win the election because more people are coming into the party.  Though we lost some governors because of intraparty problems, at the same time some are coming into the party.

“Also there is a very strong movement now to reconcile the major actors and I think that is also making the party stronger,” he added.

The governor said he is hopeful that despite the wranglings within the APC, the party would resolve all differences and put its house in order before 2023.

He however advised the party’s leadership to do a lot of planning and research to adopt the best option and approach in winning subsequent polls in the country.

Barca Star Oshoala Leads Falcons’ Team To Gold City Tournament 

The Super Falcons are aiming to become the first African side to win the Alanya Gold City Cup.


Barcelona star, Aishat Oshoala headlined the Super Falcons’ 23-person list for the 2021 Gold City Tournament in Turkey, a competition which will serve as the first test for new coach, Randy Waldrum.

The Nigerian side are expected in Antalya on Monday to take part in the fifth edition of the competition which is billed to hold between 15th – 24th February,  a post on the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF)’s website indicated.

Long-time defender, Onome Ebi, Tochukwu Oluehi, Chiamaka Nnadozie, Rita Chikwelu, Rasheedat Ajibade, Chidinma Okeke, Ngozi Okobi-Okeoghene Halimatu Ayinde, and Gift Monday were also included in the team to the competition.

Nigeria is in the same pool as Equatorial Guinea’s Nzalang Nacional and Uzbekistan, a chance for the Guineans to make amends for the 6-0 beating they suffered in Nigeria’s hand in the group stage of the 2018 Women Africa Cup of Nations finals in Ghana.

Other teams who have so far confirmed their participation in the 10-day competition are Ukraine, Serbia, India, Bulgaria with Zambia pulling out due to undisclosed reasons.

The competition which is also called the Alanya Gold City Cup is regarded as one of the most notable events in women’s football globally with Nigeria aiming to become the first African team to win the competition.

Ghana had placed third in last year’s edition of the tournament. Chile won the competition and Hungary were runners-up.

Some winners of the Alanya Gold City Cup are Poland in 2017 and France in 2018 and 2019.

Falcons’ Team To 2021 Gold City Cup

Below is the list of players invited for the competition:

Goalkeepers: Tochukwu Oluehi (C.D. Pozoalbense, Spain); Chiamaka Nnadozie (Paris FC, France); Christy Ohiaeriaku (Edo Queens)

Defenders: Onome Ebi; Glory Ogbonna (Edo Queens); Osinachi Ohale (Madrid CFF, Spain); Mariam Ibrahim (Nasarawa Amazons); Chidinma Okeke (Madrid CFF, Spain); Habeebat Akinwande (FC Robo)

Midfielders: Rita Chikwelu (Madrid CFF, Spain); Esther Sunday (ALG SPOR, Turkey); Ngozi Okobi-Okeoghene (Eskilstuna, Sweden); Antoinette Payne (Sevilla FC, Spain); Halimatu Ayinde (Eskilstuna, Sweden); Christy Ucheibe (SL Benfica, Portugal); Patricia George (Sands FC, Germany)

Forwards: Asisat Oshoala (FC Barcelona, Spain); Uchenna Kanu (Linkopings, Sweden); Rasheedat Ajibade (Atletico Madrid, Spain); Francisca Ordega; Chinwendu Ihezuo; Gift Monday (FC Robo); Charity Adule (SD Eibar, Spain)

Senate To Partner Executive In Improving Nigeria’s Oil And Gas, Says Lawmaker

The Chairman, Senate Committee on Oil and Gas (Upstream), Senator Bassey Akpan, speaks during the launch of the NNPC Upstream Cost Optimisation programme in Abuja on February 9, 2021.


The Chairman, Senate Committee on Oil and Gas (Upstream), Senator Bassey Akpan, has said the National Assembly will work closely with the Executive to improve Nigeria’s Oil and Gas industry.

He disclosed this on Tuesday during the launch of the NNPC Upstream Cost Optimisation programme in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

“I want to assure you that we will work with all of you, as well as the Executive to ensure that we leave this oil and gas far better than we met it,” he said.

“We will do everything utmost possible to ensure that we pass a bill, not just a law but a law that will be globally competitive and easy to implement and a law that will significantly drive the much desired investment into our oil and gas industry.”

Speaking on the much-awaited Petroleum Industry Bill, the lawmaker reiterated the commitment of the Ninth Assembly to pass the bill before 2021 ends.

READ ALSO: FG To Begin Oil Production In Northeast, Says Petroleum Minister

He said the parliament, headed by Senate President Ahmad Lawan, is committed to ensuring that the set target was achieved.

According to him, the essence of the lawmakers taking the PIB is to replace all the obsolete laws guiding the sector.

Senator Akpan also called on all stakeholders to harmonise to effectively secure the oil and gas in order to preserve the nation’s assets.

“I want to assure this gathering that this 9th Assembly headed by Senator Ahmad Lawan will pass this PIB before the end of 2021.

“We have set this timeline for ourselves because like they say, what gets measure gets done and we have provided clearly defined timelines to enable us meet this set target,” he added.

Nigeria Records 1,624 New COVID-19 Cases, Nine Deaths

A file photo of a health worker writing on a paper. Channels TV/ Sodiq Adelakun.


Nigeria has confirmed 1,624 new cases of coronavirus, the country’s agency responsible for the management of disease outbreaks said on Friday.

In a late-night tweet, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) stated that the new infections were recorded in 22 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT).

Latest data from the agency revealed that Lagos topped the list of states with fresh infections – reporting 535 more cases and was trailed by Plateau, Osun, Akwa Ibom, where 183, 98, 85 new COVID-19 cases were reported.

Others include FCT (83), Ondo (77), Nasarawa (72), Edo (69), Oyo (63), Rivers (52), Taraba (48), Ogun (44), Borno (31), and Kwara (31).

The remaining states are Ekiti (30), Benue (25), Kano (21), Niger (21), Kaduna (18), Abia (15), Delta (10), Bayelsa (Seven), and Zamfara (Six).

With the new confirmed cases of COVID-19, Nigeria’s total number of confirmed infections since the outbreak of the disease in the country is now 137,654.

Similarly, the more infected people have continued to recover from the disease as 1,190 patients were successfully treated, raising the total discharged figure to 111,639.

This included 831 community recoveries in Lagos State and 85 in Kaduna State managed in line with the COVID-19 guidelines.

The NCDC, however, confirmed nine more fatalities from the disease as the nation’s death toll rose to 1,641.

See the breakdown of confirmed cases of COVID-19 according to states below:

States AffectedNo. of Cases (Lab Confirmed)No. of Cases (on admission)No. DischargedNo. of Deaths
Akwa Ibom1,05146856914
Cross River212219812

APC Has Done Tremendously Well For The South-East – Nnamani


Former Senate President, Ken Nnamani has said the All Progressives Congress (APC)-led Federal Government has done tremendously well for the south-east region.

He stated this during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today.

“Infrastructurally, although it has not been publicised, the All Progressives Congress (APC) has done tremendously well in the southeast,” he said.

Nnamani, a chieftain of the APC, lamented that previous governments had abandoned the Enugu-Port Harcourt road for years which he described as a death trap to travellers and commuters.

He explained that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration commenced the construction of the dilapidated road, in addition to the Second Niger Bridge project.

Former Senate President, ken Nnamani speaks during an interview on Channels Television’s Politics Today on February 5, 2021.


“I drove from Owerri to Enugu just two days ago; I came back to Abuja just yesterday. The Enugu-Port Harcourt road that has remained a death trap, if you have seen it yourself and seen the quality of construction going on, they use granite stones where they feel the soil is bad.

“Take the second Niger Bridge which is done by President Buhari’s administration, it has been on the drawing board for a long time. Take Enugu Airport, for instance, it appeared in about four different appropriation bills passed until this time,” he added.

Speaking on the myriads of security challenges facing the nation, Nnamani backed several calls for restructuring.

Noting that ex-President Goodluck Jonathan set up a national conference in 2014 to address some of the nation’s critical issues at the time, he called on the Federal Government to adopt some recommendations made from the confab.

When asked who would fly the APC flag in the 2023 presidential election, the ex-Senate President said the ruling party would determine, adding that the Igbo people deserve to be considered for the presidential slot.

Nigeria’s COVID-19 Cases, Deaths Rise As 1,106 More People Recover

A photo of beds at one of the isolation centres in Lagos. Photo: [email protected]


The total number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Nigeria rose to 133,552 on Wednesday following the report of 1,138 new infections.

This was disclosed in a late-night tweet by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) – the agency responsible for the management of disease outbreaks in the country.

Data from the NCDC also revealed that the number of recoveries and death toll also rose in the last 24 hours.

The agency reported that 1,106 more people who initially tested positive recovered from the disease, but five more fatalities were recorded.

This brings the total number of discharged cases since the outbreak of the disease in Nigeria in February 2020 to 108,657 while the death toll stands at 1,618.

“Our discharges today (Wednesday) include 476 community recoveries in Lagos State and 121 community recoveries in Plateau State managed in line with guidelines,” the NCDC said in a tweet.

It explained that the new infections were recorded in 20 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) with Lagos reporting 377 new infections.

Similarly, the FCT had 172, Plateau reported 86, Kano got 84, Edo recorded 60, Osun confirmed 47, and Nasarawa reported 41 new COVID-19 cases.

Others were Imo – 40, Rivers – 36, Niger – 32, Oyo – 32, Borno – 29, Kaduna – 27, Delta – 18, Kwara – 17, Cross River – nine, Ekiti – eight, Bauchi – seven, Ogun – seven, Sokoto – six, and Bayelsa – three.

See the breakdown of confirmed cases of COVID-19 according to states below:

States AffectedNo. of Cases (Lab Confirmed)No. of Cases (on admission)No. DischargedNo. of Deaths
Akwa Ibom90935854110
Cross River212219812