Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State has explained the phased re-opening of the state’s economy following the lockdown necessitated by COVID-19 pandemic. He said that the construction and manufacturing sectors would be accorded high priority for full re-opening, given the high level of employment they generate,Vanguard News reports.
Sanwo-Olu gave a breakdown of the phased re-opening at a webinar by First Securities Discount House, FSDH, Group, where Sanwo-Olu was a panelist alongside Governor Nasir el-Rufai of Kaduna State and Governor Godwin Obaseki of Edo. The virtual conference, which had about 1,200 people participating across the globe, was held on the theme “A Global Pandemic: Local Realities and Peculiarities – A View from the Frontlines.”
According to him, the entertainment, hospitality and aviation industries will be considered in the second phase of intervention. Sanwo-Olu said that the weeks of inertia in the economy also had significant impact on Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises, MSMEs, and that millions of small-scale businesses operating in the state could completely fold up if the economy was not fully reactivated. He said the state government was granting three-month moratorium to MSMEs that applied for loan facilities at the Lagos State Employment Trust Fund, LSETF.
Sanwo-Olu also said that the government had started to compile data of registered MSMEs in the state for operational support that would cushion the effect of economic slowdown on their businesses. His words: “The other part of our intervention is our conversation with big corporations in various sectors on the requirements they may want from us to ensure that they do not retrench their staff in this emergency period. This conversation is very important. “The companies have given us a retinue of incentives they want us to give and these are the things that will affect the state’s Internally Generated Revenue, IGR.
“We are willing to make this sacrifice to prevent loss of livelihood for millions of our citizens.” Sanwo-Olu said that in the course of the lockdown, the state government provided palliatives for over 800,000 households, as there was the need to bring succour to residents that lived on daily wage. He said that people must trust the government on the management of the coronavirus and data being churned out. He added: “Lagos has been affected both on the healthcare and economy sides. We have had to take a deep dive into our budget and have about 25 percent cut, which is not a very good number for us.
“This is the time we need to continue to spend to stave off pressure on our citizens. However, we need to be prudent at this time and cut unimportant expenditures. Salary is one thing we cannot even touch. “In terms of direct economy, entertainment industry, hospitality, land transportation and aviation businesses have been affected significantly. “These sectors are large employers of labour. We are thinking through on how to reset these sectors in a graduated manner and bring back the economy on the full swing.”
Nigeria Records 328 New COVID-19 Cases, Total Infections Now 11,844
Nigeria’s COVID-19 cases has now reached 11, 844 as the Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC), announced 328 new cases on Friday.
Lagos will soon run out of isolation centres – Commissioner
The Lagos State Government has revealed that if the state continues to record over 200 to 300 positive cases on a daily basis, it will soon run out of isolation centers. It added that with the increasing number of positive COVID-19 cases in the state, only moderate to severe cases will be managed at the isolation centers while the asymptomatic and mild cases will be managed at home.
n a chat with journalists in the state on Friday, the Commissioner for health, Prof Akin Abayomi insisted the modalities for the community based/home-based care will be defined as to who qualifies to be managed at home and who will be managed at the isolation facility. He noted that if Lagos continues to record over 200 to 300 positive cases on a daily basis, the State will soon run out of isolation centers.
Hence, the need for introducing the home-based care within a week or two. He said the community/home-based management will be introduced to Lagos to reserve the isolation center for the critically ill.
“We will be operating from the primary healthcare centers (PHCs) and that is where we will decide who qualifies to be managed at home or at isolation center. “Part of the condition for being managed at home will be; is the home adequate? “Is the person feeling unwell or having pre-existing medical condition or having difficulty breathing? “The answers to these and more will determine where the person will be treated for COVID-19” The Commissioner stated that though there are plans to recruit more manpower, there are volunteers who are being trained at the moment and will be deployed for the home care management within a week or two. “For the mild/asymptomatic cases who will be managed at home, we will call them, our volunteers/PHC workers deployed for that purpose will visit them, we will ensure they have regular consultation through our telemedicine online care, and we will monitor their progress too. “At the same time, they will be given care packs and medications which includes pain killers and vitamins. “We will also give enough information to the masses on their safety as well as that of their families and neighbors during the home management period.” The health Commissioner further disclosed that there are plans by the state government to increase the capacity of daily test from 1,000 to 3,000 daily He said Lagos has so far done over 22,000 tests, adding that, the more tests are done, the more cases will be recorded, hence the need to quickly plan for more cases.
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