Despite recording 176 new COVID-19 cases, Nigeria’s recovery rate remained at a significant high with 152 patients discharged on Saturday.
The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) made the announcement via its Twitter handle at 11:56pm on Saturday.
A total of 5,621 cases have now been recorded in 34 states and the federal capital territory (FCT), while Kogi and Cross River are yet to record any case.
Five deaths were recorded and the number of fatalities increased from 171 to 176, while recoveries increased from 1,320 to 1472.
176 new cases of #COVID19;
5621 cases of #Covid19 in Nigeria
Deaths: 176 pic.twitter.com/VBFAS6YQYJ
— NCDC (@NCDCgov)May 16, 2020
The number of samples tested has also increased as the country moved from 48 samples tested on March 15, to a total of 32,942 samples tested, exactly two months after, on May 15.
However, according to agency, the spike in the number of cases over the past few weeks points to a significant impact of community transmission.
For instance, on April 15, only six of Nigeria’s total of 407 confirmed cases were said to have contracted the virus from “unknown sources”. However, by May 15, a total of 3,489 patients out of 5,445 cases had no epidemiologic link.
With the increase in community transmission, there have been concerns over the possible declaration of another total lockdown.
While the initial five-week lockdown declared in Lagos, Ogun and the FCT was relaxed on May 4, and a nationwide curfew declared instead, the first phase of the two-week lockdown relaxation ends on May 18, and the presidential task force (PTF) on COVID-19 says the guidelines would be reviewed.
Speaking at a media briefing on Tuesday, Sani Aliyu, the PTF national coordinator, said the federal government might take a different approach if the guidelines issued did not yield the expected results on limiting the spread of the coronavirus across the country.
“We will be taking further decisions based on the review of the performance of the restrictions that we have in place. And we will not hesitate to change our strategy if it looks like it is not working,” he had said.