Nigeria has again recorded a steep rise in COVID-19 cases with 597 new cases reported on Thursday, Sept. 9, according to the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
The Centre said the fresh infections were spread across 18 states including the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja. It added that the latest data included backlogs of cases for Taraba and Edo states for Sept. 7 to 9.
Topping the chart, Rivers recorded 257 cases, followed by Lagos with 157 infections.
Edo reported 85 infections, followed by Imo with 63 cases. FCT had 33 cases, Delta (28), Kaduna (27), Benue (17), Akwa-Ibom (13), Ekiti (13) and Taraba(12).
Other states with fresh cases are Bayelsa (5), Kano (4), Ogun (4), Oyo (3), Abia (2), Nasarawa (2) and Plateau (2). With these, the total positive cases stood at 197,773.
The country also recorded seven deaths, raising total fatalities to 2,585.
As of Friday morning, at least 9,591 people were hospitalised across the country with COVID-19.
Health experts say the spike in cases and deaths may be due to the spread of the more contagious Delta variant amidst the high population of Nigerians who remain unvaccinated.
The country ranks tenth on the list of African countries with the highest cases and hospitalisations, though, up to 185,597 people have recovered from the disease.
The NCDC has urged Nigerians to observe COVID-19 preventive measures and get the vaccine to stop the mutation and check deaths arising from the disease.
So far, Nigeria has administered 5.7 million COVID-19 vaccines (Oxford-AstraZeneca or Moderna) with 1.7 million being fully vaccinated.
In hopes of increasing its vaccination drive, the Nigerian government introduced a corporate vaccination module that allows workers to get vaccinated in their office premise, free of charge.
The government had similarly warned it would clamp down on eligible citizens who refuse to vaccinate, saying vaccine refusers endanger other people in a manner that may cause the health system to collapse again amidst the third wave of the pandemic.
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