COVID-19: PTF ‘concerned about increasing daily numbers’ – Mustapha

By Chimezie Godfrey
The Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha has urged Nigerians to take full responsibility in curbing the rapid spread of corona virus in Country.
Mustapha made the assertion during the National briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on Thursday in Abuja.
He stressed that the PTF is very concerned about the increasing daily numbers that are being recorded, adding that yesterday 6th January, 2021, that Nigeria recorded 1,664 infections.
“The PTF is very concerned about the increasing daily numbers that we are recording. Yesterday 6th January, 2021, we recorded 1,664 infections,”  Mustapha said
He added, “This is yet another all-time high in Nigeria and we must all take full responsibility through compliance and vigilance. It is better to wear a face mask than being on a ventilator.
“In our previous briefings, we have consistently appealed to all Nigerians to stay safe and act in most defensive and protective ways by complying with the NPIs already prescribed.
“We urge you all, at this point, to raise and be our brother’s keeper by taking the expected responsibility. Remind your neighbor to do the right thing in view of the imminent danger facing us as a country and the world in general.
“Our records show that our test per million (TPM) is at 4,695 while our test positivity rate (TPR) is at 9.6% and our Case Fatality Rate has increased to 3% haven recorded 1,324 deaths, these data are not encouraging. Nigeria just crossed the 1million mark for testing across the federation. Testing remains a key strategy of our National Response,”he said.
Mustapha urged the Sub-Nationals to revamp testing and contact tracing in the bid to curb the menace of this dreaded virus.
“It is only through testing that we can know our status and treat early if infected.
“This will provide among other things, evidence for effective feedback, course correction, experience learning and sharing, as well as optimize documentation systems for future reference.
“Efforts are being made to increase the supply of oxygens to our health facilities across the country.
“Mr. President has approved the establishment of at least one new Oxygen plants in each state of the Federation, while the existing ones will be made fully functional.
“We continue to thank the Private Sector initiative as well as the Nigerian Air Force for their continued support,” he stressed.
The PTF Chairman called on the media and other critical stakeholders to pass the right messages to their followers.
He said,”As the Government is working round the clock to secure a safe and right vaccines for the Country, we call on the Media, Traditional and Religious as well as our community leaders to pass the right message to their followers so that together, we can win this war against this virus.
“To overcome some of these challenges, the PTF will intensify the risk communication and community engagement to create awareness.
“The share level of doubts about the virus is alarming and I call on every one to become advocates in support of the National Response.
“The PTF is working to develop new Health Protection Regulations to support existing COVID-19 protocols and to strengthen compliance with non-pharmaceutical interventions across the country.”
Mustapha decried the fact that some Nigerians continue to present fake results when travelling outside the shores of this country.
According to him, this remains a major source of concern to the Federal Government.
He said the PTF has directed private laboratories to immediately put in place measures to validate results and ensure that all passengers are registered on the travel portal before samples are processed to stop this activity.
Mustapha disclosed that the PTF is aware that the world is at a critical phase of infections.
He said that they are constantly reviewing the strategy to emerging situations especially in risk communication, vaccine hesitancy, fake news and disinformation.
The PTF Chairman called on the general public to remain focused on the drive to reduce the level of infection and make the country safe again.
He urged the Sub-Nationals to enforce relevant measures that will help to curb the effect of this virus on lives and livelihood of citizens.