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    COVID-19: 67 patients discharged in Oyo isolation centre

    Gov. Sheyi Makinde

    Sixty-seven COVID-19 patients were on Saturday discharged from the Oyo State Isolation Centre after receiving their second negative test results.

    Gov. Seyi Makinde, who announced this through his official Twitter handle on Sunday, said the figure raised the number of discharged cases in the state to 992.

    He, however, stated that 17 new cases were recorded on Saturday, when their tests came back positive.

    According to the governor, the cases are from Ibadan North Local Government Area (LGA) with six, Ibadan Southwest LGA with four, while Lagelu and Oluyole LGAs have three and two cases respectively.

    Akinyele LGA and Ogbomosho North LGA recorded one case each. So, the total number of confirmed cases in Oyo State as at today is 1,706, Makinde tweeted.

    The governor added that one COVID-19-related death was also recorded on Saturday, bringing the number of deaths in Oyo State to 21.

    He implored residents of the state to keep following the guidelines of the COVID-19 Task Force to ensure a slow down in the spread of the virus in the state.

    Wash your hands regularly with soap and water, wear face masks in public places and maintain proper social distancing.

    Also call the Emergency Operations Centre on 08095394000, 08095863000, 08078288999 and 08078288800 or visit a community-based testing centre, if you have any COVID-19 symptom.

    The symptoms are cough, fever, tiredness, body ache, loss of smell/taste and shortness of breath. the governor tweeted.

    Source: NAN News

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    C/River, Benue enjoy handwashing facilities from NGO

    A well equipped hospital

    By Tosin Kolade
    United Purpose, an international NGO, has donated 500 hand washing facilities to Primary Healthcare Centres in Benue and Cross River states, to prevent the spread of coronavirus in the country.

    The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that United Purpose was implementing the Rural Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion in Nigeria (RUSHPIN) programme in the two states, with the benefitting 41 Local Government Areas getting a 3-month supply of soap.

    At the distribution of the items on Saturday in Abuja, the Programme Manager for RUSHPIN, Mr Nanpet Chuktu, said an assessment of healthcare facilities carried out by the organisation in rural parts of the two states showed that primary healthcare facilities were in dire need of hygiene facilities.

    According to him, this was necessary to enable healthcare workers and hospital visitors conveniently practice frequent and proper hand washing to prevent the spread of coronavirus.

    He said that the products would help reduce the rate of healthcare worker infections and transmission of COVID-19 and other infectious diseases, as they were first responders to those in need of medical attention at the community level.

    Hand washing is not just about fighting coronavirus, today we urge the state governments to invest in more sustainable sanitation and hygiene infrastructure for health centers and schools across the state as this is essential for good health.

    These Healthcare centers to receive these facilities were identified through an assessment of health facilities carried out by the RUSHPIN Programme to determine the facilities in dire need of this intervention.

    Our frontline workers are the health care workers when there is a pandemic, a lot of workers will step behind, but our healthcare workers will be our front line of defense, he said.

    Chuktu said that its donor, Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC), was supporting to ensure that about 500 Primary health Care centers were equipped with handwashing stations.

    The programme manager called for behavioural change through information dissemination as a first line of defense, adding that Nigerians ought to safeguard themselves with washing of hands at all times.

    Dr Beta Edu, Commissioner for Health, Cross River state, said lauded the organisation for the donation towards encouraging hand washing practice.

    According to her, for every disease that comes up, one of the cheapest, most effective ways to overcome it is to wash hands with soap.

    We will continue to emphasise this because we know the benefits associated with it and how it can save us from undue pressures and costs. We are grateful, as a state and a people that we have partners that can stand up to the occasion whenever the need arises.

    WSSCC has been very supportive of United Purpose and Cross River State and we cannot thank them enough for the progress we have made as a state in the WASH programme, she said.

    Mr Ishola Abdulrazak, Benue State Coordinator, National Primary Health Care Development Agency, said there was need for stakeholders to commit both time and resources towards hygiene promotion.

    Community and PHC is the key to the fight against COVID-19. United Purposes contribution to PHCs demonstrates their commitment to hygiene promotion.

    There is a great need for every stakeholder to commit both time and resources towards hygiene promotion, and they have led the way, he said.

    NAN reports that the RUSHPIN Programme was an initiative of the Government of Nigeria, implemented with funding support from the Global Sanitation Fund (GSF)/Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC).

    United Purpose (UP), an International NGO headquartered in the UK, is the Executing Agency for the RUSHPIN programme.

    RUSHPIN uses the Community-Led Total Sanitation approach, to empower communities to collectively change their sanitation and hygiene behaviour, ensuring that every community member uses a toilet and practices good hygiene.

    Source: NAN News

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    Army recovers 711 cows, 592 sheep from bandits
    By Ibrahim G. Ahmad

    The Nigeria Army under the Operation Sahel Sanity recovered 711 cows and 592 sheep between July 6 and July 11 in three northwest states, an official said on Sunday.

    The Acting Director of Defence Media Operations, Brig.-Gen. Benard Onyeuko, made this known at a press briefing at the Special Army Super Camp in Faskari, Katsina.

    Onyeuko noted that the Chief of Army Staff flagged-off the campaign on July 6 to root out armed bandits, cattle rustlers, kidnappers and other criminal elements from Morth West.

    He said that the cows and sheep were recovered in Sokoto, Zamfara and Katsina states.

    He said that on July 7, following intelligence reports, the army mobilised troops to Magira, Makwaruwa, Garin Damo, Kasale Made, Dadin Kowa, Gangara and Shadama in Sabon Birni and Isa LGAs of Sokoto State, and pursued armed bandits who exchanged fire with them.

    He said that army troops intercepted the bandits with a large number of rustled cattle from Jangemi Village forest to Kwaren Ganuwa, adding that the bandits fled toward Munhaye Forest.

    According to him, the troops recovered 250 cows and 150 rams from them.

    Similarly on July 8, the troops arrested one Malam Halilu Ibrahim, a suspected bandit informant and seller of rustled cattle, who was about to display some stolen cows for sale, according to Onyeuko.

    The official told journalists that the suspect confessed that the cattle belonged to a notorious bandit leader.

    He added that a total of 18 cows were recovered from him and duly handed over to their owners.

    He also said that on July 9, following a tip-off on the activities of armed bandits and cattle rustlers in Ruwan Dawa in Maradun area in Zamfara, the troops recovered 14 cows.

    The official called on members of the public to continue to support the army and other security agencies with intelligence information to facilitate their operations.

    Source: NAN News

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    Nigeria Police, INTERPOL arrest 3 suspects over cybercrime
    Operatives of the Nigeria Police Cybercrime Unit and the INTERPOL National Central Bureau (NCB), Abuja have arrested three suspects over advance fee fraud, money laundering and romance scam.

    The Force Public Relations Officer (FPRO), Mr Frank Mba disclosed this in a statement on Sunday in Abuja.

    He said the suspects were arrested in Uromi, Edo following investigations into suspected fraudulent online procurement and supply of COVID-19 protective mask, received through the INTERPOL NCB Wiesbaden, Germany.

    The FPRO said investigations had revealed that one of the suspect, 30 was an internet fraudster and a member of a Turkey-based online scamming syndicate.

    He said the suspect supplies foreign and local bank accounts to receive fraudulent funds and use same as conduit to other feeder accounts.

    Mba said a building worth N20 million, a Toyota RAV-4 2015 model worth N6.5 million, and a Toyota Matrix 2002 model valued at N2 million procured with the proceeds of the crime were recovered from the suspect.

    He said the second suspect, 32, returned to Nigeria from Italy in February, but maintained close contacts and illicit dealings with his Italian associates.

    The FPRO said investigations had revealed that he had made over N120 million from internet fraud and other cybercrime dealings.

    He said investigation had also shown that he received the sum of 52, 000 EUROs recently from his criminal associates in Italy as commission for his active involvement in an international cybercrime deal.

    Mba said the suspect also own a filling station established with the proceeds of the crime.

    The FPRO said the third suspect, 36, an expert in internet fraud, identity theft and impersonation, falsely claimed to be a British citizen.

    He also poses to be one Kelly Galk on online dating apps which he uses to carry out romance scams and to defraud unsuspecting members of the public, locally and internationally.

    Investigation has revealed that he has made millions of Naira from his illicit cybercrime transactions since he joined the syndicate, he said.

    In a related development, Mba said that Police operatives had successfully rescued an American citizen, confined in a Lagos hotel where she was held against her wish for over a year.

    He said the victim who hailed from Washington DC, USA and a retired civil servant in the US, had arrived Nigeria on Feb. 13, 2019.

    The FPRO said the victim was on a visit to a 34-year-old man and a native of Ikeduru LGA of Imo whom she met on Facebook.

    He said the victim was rescued by Police operatives attached to the Intelligence Response Team (IRT), Ogun Annex following information received from a patriotic and civic minded Nigerian.

    The rescue of the American lady is coming on the heels of a similar case of abducted Philippino lady who was lured to Nigeria by her supposed lover whom she equally met on Facebook.

    Investigations reveal that the suspect is a graduate of Business Administration and Management and an internet fraudster who has defrauded many unsuspecting members of the public both locally and internationally.

    The suspect, deliberately lured the victim into the country under the pretext of love and deceitfully married her on May 15, 2019.

    He subsequently held her captive in a hotel, extorted from her, monies amounting to a total of 48,000 US dollars, he said.

    Mba said the suspect also forcefully collected and took control of her credit and debit cards as well as the operation of her bank accounts including the receipt of her monthly retirement benefits and allowances.

    He said the suspect also used the victim as a front to defraud her associates and other foreign personalities and companies.

    Mba said all the suspects would be charged to court upon conclusion of investigation for prosecution in line with the Cybercrime Prevention/Prohibition Act, 2015.

    Source: NAN News

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    Nigeria presents voluntary national review report on SDGs to UN

    SDGs

    The Federal Government will present its 2nd Voluntary National Review (VNR) on the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to the United Nations High Level Political Forum (HLPF) on Monday.

    President Muhammadu Buhariwould be presenting the report at the 2nd Panel session of the forum, which would be holding online for the first time this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

    Mrs Janet Mcdickson, Head Communications SSAP-SDGs, who made this known in a statement on Sunday in Abuja, said Buhari would be represented by Mrs Adegoke Orelope-Adefulire, his Senior Special Assistant on SDGs.

    The statement noted that Nigerias 2020 Voluntary National Review (VNR) on SDGs would focus on the key issues of poverty (SDG-1), an inclusive economy (SDG-8), health and wellbeing (SDG-3).

    Others are Education (SDG-4), Gender equality (SDG-5), and the enabling environment of peace and security (SDG-16), and partnerships (SDG-17).

    It further said this focus was based on Nigerias current development priorities and the development objectives of the Buharis administration.

    This VNR is being developed while facing huge challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic testing Nigerias public health systems, and of the collapse in oil prices, for an economy still getting 86 per cent of public revenue from oil and gas.

    Nigeria is one of the 47 VNR reporting countries this year. The list also includes 26 first time presenters, 20 second time presenters and 1 third time presenter.

    The reviews of progress at the national and sub-national levels are inclusive, country-led and country-driven, the statement said.

    It stated that Nigeria was also among the 44 countries of the UN that presented its VNR in 2017 on the implementation of the 2030 agenda and the SDGs at HLPF.

    It added that as stipulated in paragraph 84 of the 2030 Agenda, regular reviews by the HLPF were to be voluntary, state-led, undertaken by both developed and developing countries.

    It stressed that the review should provide a platform for partnerships, including through the participation of major groups and other relevant stakeholders.

    The VNRs aim to facilitate the sharing of experiences, including successes, challenges and lessons learned, with a view to accelerating the implementation of the 2030 Agenda.

    The VNRs also sought to strengthen policies and institutions of governments and to mobilise multi-stakeholder support and partnerships for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals, it said.

    The statement noted that the HLPF was the main United Nations platform on sustainable development and it had a central role in the follow-up and review of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the SDGs at the global level.

    It explained that during the meeting, the forum received and considers Voluntary National Review Reports from selected countries.

    The statement revealed that this year, the meeting of the HLPF on Sustainable Development convened under the auspices of the Economic and Social Council, is to be held from July 7 to July 16.

    According to it, this includes a 3-day ministerial meeting of the forum from July 14 July 16.

    The theme is Accelerated action and transformative pathways: realising the decade of action and delivery for sustainable development.

    Source: NAN News

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    FG to review Air agreement with UK, others over landing right withdrawal

    Air Peace plane

    By Lizzy Okoji

    Agreement

    The Federal Government says it will review its Air agreements with various countries as a result of the unacceptable treatment of Nigerian carriers, especially as COVID-19 lasted.

    The Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chief Geoffrey Onyeama, made this known via his verified twitter handle on Sunday following the denial of landing rights to Air Peace at Londons Heathrow Airport.

    Onyeama, however, urged aggrieved Nigerians not to protest, but be grateful to Air Peace for providing alternative arrangements to ensure their successful evacuation in spite of the challenges.

    Having been allowed to carry out one very successful evacuation of Nigerians from London at very low fares.

    Air Peace in coordination with the Nigerian Government and full knowledge of the UK authorities scheduled two additional flights.

    All the arrangements were made including payments, only for the UK authorities to withdraw landing rights close to departure despite strong representations by the Nigerian Government.

    Including pointing out the hardship that would be caused to hundreds of Nigerian evacuees, he said.

    Onyeama said Air Peace could have just refunded the passengers, but exceptionally, patriotically and altruistically agreed to find an alternative carrier acceptable to the UK authorities.

    This, according to the minister, Air Peace did to carry out the evacuation a day later than scheduled, but for much higher fares.

    He said these higher fares could legitimately have been passed on to the evacuees, but Air Peace bore this huge cost itself.

    This is to let the aggrieved evacuees know that the objects of their grievance should neither be Air Peace nor the Nigerian Government.

    They should rather be eternally grateful to Air Peace.

    The Nigerian Government will review its Air agreements with various countries as a result of the unacceptable treatment of Nigerian carriers during this pandemic, Onyeama said.

    The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports the evacuation of stranded Nigerians was rescheduled from July 13 to July 14, with the departure airport changed from Heathrow to Gatwick Airport, London.

    This, however, generated an outcry from some stranded Nigerians who blamed Air Peace Airline and the Federal Government for the inconveniences.

    Source: NAN News

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    Lagos state COVID-19 mortality rises to 185

    COVID-19

    By Oluwafunke Ishola

    The Lagos State Government says it has recorded three new COVID-19 related deaths, raising the number of COVID-19 related deaths in the state to 185.

    The states Commissioner for Health, Prof. Akin Abayomi, made the disclosure through his Twitter account on Sunday while giving the states COVID-19 update for July 10.

    He, however, did not give additional information on the sex, age, nationality or medical conditions of the deceased.
    Abayomi added that out of the 1,147 COVID-19 tests conducted in the state on July 10, 165 were confirmed positive.

    The new cases had brought the total number of confirmed COVID-19 infections in the state to 12,056, he said.

    The commissioner disclosed that 47,684 COVID-19 tests had been conducted so far in the state since the outbreak of the epidemic.

    A total of 1,841 of the confirmed cases have since been discharged from COVID-19 care centres following their full recovery.

    We still have 332 of the patients currently under isolation in public and private care centres, he said.

    Abayomi said that 7,634 of the confirmed cases monitored in communities by COVID-19 state response team have either fully recovered or positively responding to treatments.

    He, however, said that 2,064 active cases in communities were yet to turn up for admission in COVID-19 care centres.

    Abayomi stressed that COVID-19 was real, thus advised residents on wearing of facemasks, regular hand washing and ensuring physical distancing to reduce the risk of infection.

    He advised residents to call the states 0800CORONA hotline for any COVID-19 related issues. (NAN)

    Source: NAN News

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    Cash transfer: FG disburses N349.5m to beneficiaries in Kaduna

    Cash transfer: FG disburses N349.5m to beneficiaries in Kaduna

    By Philip Yatai

    The Federal Government has concluded the disbursement of N349.5 million to 34,946 poor and vulnerable households in Kaduna State.

    The Head of Cash Transfer Unit in the State, Hajiya Hauwa Abdulrazaq, made this known in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Kaduna on Sunday.

    Abdulrazaq explained that the disbursement was under the federal governments Conditional Cash Transfer, a Households Uplifting Programme targeting poorest of the poor households in the country.

    She said that the beneficiaries, drawn from nine Local Government Areas (LGAs) of the state received N10,000 each, being payment for the months of May and June at N5,000 per month.

    She identified the benefitting LGAs as Kajuru, Birnin Gwari, Kauru, Lere, Sanga, Kachia, Kubau, Ikara and Chikun.

    She said that 4,470 poor and vulnerable households benefited in Kajuru; 8,032 in Birnin Gwari; 1,963 in Kauru; 1,406 in Sanga, while 4,380 benefited in Lere.

    She added that a total of 2,021 poor and vulnerable households benefited in Kachia; 5,478 in Ikara; 2,784 in Chikun, and 4,412 in Kubau.

    We began the disbursement on July 1 and ended the exercise on July 10.

    The households uplifting programme is one of the national social investment programmes which implementation began in September 2016, she said.

    NAN recalls that the programme began in 2017 in Kaduna state with about 10,000 beneficiaries, but expanded to 22,380 in April 2020.

    A total of 12,566 new beneficiaries were added in May, which amounted to the current 34,956 beneficiaries in the state.

    The state government had also commenced the process of capturing poor and vulnerable households into the social register in the remaining 14 LGAs, from which beneficiaries of the cash transfer would be extracted. (NAN)

    Source: NAN News

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    247 Nigerians stranded in Malaysia, Thailand arrive Nigeria

    NIDCOM DG Abike Dabiri- Erewa

    By Maureen Okon

    Two hundred and forty-seven Nigerians who were stranded in Malaysia and Thailand have arrived at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport, Abuja.

    Mr Gabriel Odu the Head of Media and Public Relations Unit of the Nigerians in Diaspora Commission (NiDCOM) said this in a statement on Sunday in Abuja.

    Odu said that the returnees arrived at the airport at about 11p.m. on Saturday, adding that they were transported into the country by a chartered Air peace flight APK-7813.

    Some of them disembarked in Abuja while others proceeded to Murtala Muhammed International Airport, Lagos.

    All evacuees tested negative for COVID-19 and are now on a 14-day self-isolation as mandated by NCDC , @Fmohnigeria and PTF on #COVID-19, Odu said. (NAN)

    Source: NAN News

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    Islamic Financial Institution tenets will help actualise SDGs  Official

    Islamic Financial Institution tenets will help actualise SDGs Jaiz Bank Official

    By Ebere Agozie

    Mr Muhammed Muhammed, Chief strategist of Jaiz Bank, says Nigeria embracing the tenets espoused by the Islamic Financial Institution will help in the realisation of the UNDPs Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

    Muhammed, who disclosed this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria, via e-mail said Nigeria had the opportunity to lead the continent using Islamic Finance tools to achieve the SDGs.

    Muhammed who recently represented the country at a high level taskforce meeting organised by the British Government and the Islamic Finance Council UK, added that embracing the tenets would definitely reduce poverty in the country.

    The Nigeria clime has already realised the potential of Islamic finance, for instance the overwhelming acceptance and subscription of the Sukuk issued by the Federal government to finance its developmental projects.

    This can surely be replicated in the area of promoting SDGs, by incorporating innovative Islamic finance products of alleviating poverty.

    He said that the world was looking to Islamic Finance to achieve the SDGs and Nigeria should play a prominent role in spearheading efforts to use the available tools for the SDGs in Africa.

    We should join others in charting a roadmap for governments the world over as they strive to make the SDGs realistic for economic growth.

    The value proposition of Islamic Finance has always been in its impact and the relation to real economy, which is supposed to have a multiplier effect on economic growth and development.

    In essence, Islamic finance tenets are totally in conformance with the overall aims and objectives of the SDGs. They will therefore strengthen the SDG initiatives, rather than diminishing them.

    He said that Nigeria should tap into the emerging global liquidity pools seeking SDG-aligned products and increase tactical alignment with development bank funders.

    There exist several opportunities such as the Green Sukuk, which is one investment that paves a way towards more climate-friendly investments and similarly, the aspect of Islamic Social Responsible Investing and green finance which we should tap into.

    He enumerated more specific ways that Nigeria could help in leading the efforts to apply the Islamic financial tools for SDGs in Africa to includemodelling the federal governments Islamic-finance-embedded programmes to other African countries.

    Nigeria stands out in the area of Islamic finance among other African countries.

    As such the country has the ability to facilitate knowledge sharing within the continent, extending technical and capacity initiatives to other African countries, he added.

    Muhammed noted that the emergence and track record of Jaiz Bank had demonstrated the great potential that were embedded in the Islamic Finance Products and Services.

    He, however, added that other areas such as the inter-faith dialogue initiatives could be further explored in order to achieve greater benefit. (NAN)

    Source: NAN News

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