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The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has charged Nigerians to prevent the onset of a full-fledged fifth wave of COVID-19 as the Muslim faithful mark the 2022 Eid-el-Kabir celebrations.

This was contained in the NCDC’s COVID-19 public health advisory issued on Friday.

“Although confirmed cases increased from 267 to 445 between weeks 21 to 24, hospitalisation and fatalities have remained low suggesting these are mostly mild to moderate cases or we are in the lag phase before we see the accompanying increase in severe disease and hospitalisation”, the health advisory stated.

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“Since Nigeria’s first case was detected on 27th February 2020, we have had 256,695 confirmed cases with 3,144 deaths across 36 states and the FCT.

“The recent increase in cases may be in part or whole due to increased testing over the last few weeks, increased circulation of Omicron sub-lineages (BA.4 and BA.5 as seen elsewhere), and an increase in seasonal illness with cold and cough symptoms as well as poor adherence to preventive measures such as the use of masks.

“In addition to the COVID-19 situation in Nigeria and globally, the upcoming Eid-El-Kabir celebrations against a backdrop of suboptimal COVID-19 vaccination uptake and increasing COVID-19 case numbers calls for increased individual and collective responsibility. The virus that causes COVID-19 is more likely to spread in mass gatherings and when people do not adhere to preventive measures such as physical distancing, mask use, and hand hygiene.

“As we celebrate, we urge Nigerians to prevent the onset of a full-fledged fifth COVID-19 wave by remaining mindful of the high risk of spread of COVID-19 and acting in tandem by adhering to recommended public health safety measures.”

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