- 26% of the calls received on the emergency lines are hoax calls, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has said
- Chikwe Ihekweazu, the head of the agency, said the hoax calls makes it difficult for those with genuine cases to contact the NCDC
- Ihekweazu said the calls were from people wanting to know about the availability of the COVID-19 drug from Madagascar
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Chikwe Ihekweazu, the director-general of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has revealed that last week its centres received about 26% of ‘hoax’ calls on the emergency lines, Premium Times reports.
Ihekweazu who disclosed this on Monday, July 13, at the bi-weekly Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 briefing said some of the callers are trying to find out about the availability of the controversial COVID-19 cure from Madagascar.
He went on to note that others were only calling to see if the emergency lines were actually working.
The NCDC boss also lamented that hoax calls are clogging the phone lines and make it difficult for those with genuine cases to contact the agency.
Earlier, Legit.ng reported that the Lagos state health commissioner, Akin Abayomi, revealed that 80% of the calls received on the emergency lines dedicated to coronavirus are hoax calls.
Abayomi, during a presentation at the state secretariat, said the hoax calls received by the Lagos State Emergency responders are very distracting in managing the outbreak in the state and across the nation.
While giving a breakdown of the calls, the health commissioner noted that 59% of the calls were from NCDC diverted to Lagos, while 27% were put through to the Lagos state 08000CORONA and 14% were random calls received by the commissioner himself and other officials.
In a related development, the total COVID-19 infection rate in Nigeria has now surpassed 33,000 as the coronavirus pandemic continues to ravage throughout the world.
The NCDC on Monday, July 13, announced that the country recorded 595 new cases. This brings the total number of infections in the country to 33,153 with 13,671 recoveries and 744 deaths.
The federal health agency in a tweet on its official handle at 11:39 pm disclosed that the disease spread across 20 states with Lagos topping the chart again with 156 cases while Oyo occupied the second spot with 141 cases.
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