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Panic in UNILAG over students’ COVID-19 cases

…varsity pledges to provide emergency services

Nigeria to get 41.2m vaccines in 2 months – NPHCDA

There was panic yesterday at the main campus of the University of Lagos (UNILAG), Akoka, following the news that some unidentified students had reportedly contracted COVID-19 Some parents told New Telegraph that some female students in one of the halls who were said to have contracted coronavirus, were asked to vacate the hall by the authorities. The parents, who flayed the action of the university, however, said that rather than ejecting the affected students, the management should have isolated/quarantined them in order not to spread the virus.

The university had, prior to the resumption of academic activities, ordered the students to sign Indemnity Forms without which they would not be allowed into the hostels and lecture halls. However, an official of the university, who spoke on condition of anonymity, neither confirmed nor denied the report, but told New Telegraph that the authorities had a meeting he believed was connected with the issue.

Meanwhile, the university management, in a statement issued after the meeting, said: “The University of Lagos Medical Centre wishes to inform all members of the University of Lagos community about what appears to be the start of a potential third wave of the COVID-19 pandemic in Lagos State.

“The Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo- Olu, in his press statement issued on July 11, 2021, stated that since the beginning of July, there has been a steep increase in the number of daily confirmed cases, with the test positivity rate going from 1.1 per cent at the end of June 2021, to its current rate of 6.6 per cent as at the 8th of July 2021. This is with a concurrent increase in the occupancy rate at Lagos State isolation centres.” The Medical Centre assured all members of the university community that actions in line with the federal and state government guidelines had been taken regarding this potential threat in the university community. As part of the moves to ensure safety on campus, the university noted that it had become imperative once more for students and members of the community to judiciously adhere to the following COVID- 19 guidelines and protocols in order to curb the spread of the disease. These include the use of face masks, observance of social distancing, regular washing of hands with soap and use of alcohol-based sanitisers.

The university told the students to get fully vaccinated to prevent the spread of the disease and insisted that temperature checks would be taken before entry into buildings within the community. “Re-activation of hand washing stands at all entry points to buildings within the community. Also, labeling of seats and pathways to ensure social distancing would be maintained, while gatherings/ meetings should be limited to 50 per cent occupancy in closed spaces or preferably conducted in outdoor spaces or via virtual platforms,” the statement said. However, the statement noted that mobilisation of COVID-19 Response teams in faculties and departments for the domestication and implementation of the COVID-19 guidelines and protocols and peculiar issues that might arise would be carried out.

On travel protocols, the management enjoined all members of the university community embarking on international travels to comply with the guidelines on COVID- 19, and self-quarantine for a minimum of seven days on return to the country before taking the arrival COVID-19 PCR test.

Also on religious activities on campus, the school said more vigilance would be required in all churches, mosques and other places of worship within the university, and therefore full compliance with all protective protocols is now mandatory. It promised that efforts would be made for another COVID-19 vaccination once a new batch of vaccines was available to Lagos State. Meanwhile, sources claimed the Dean, Faculty of Law, Ige Bolodeoku, moved from one lecture room to the other to ensure compliance with the COVID-19 protocols, particularly wearing of face masks, without which such students were sent out of lecture halls.

 

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