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January 01 2021 at 05:10 PM by Samikshya Joshi

COVID-19              UPDATE-8


A new variant of the novel coronavirus seems to have emerged in Nigeria, the head of Africa's disease control body said, cautioning that more investigation was needed.

The news comes after Britain and South Africa both reported new variants of the SARS-CoV-2 virus that appear to be more contagious, leading to new travel restrictions and turmoil in markets.

"It's a separate lineage from the UK and the South African lineages," John Nkengasong, director of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) told an online news conference from Addis Ababa. The one we are seeing in Nigeria, and this is based on very limited data yet, has the 501 mutations," Nkengasong added, referring to the variant termed 501.V2 identified in South Africa and announced by public health officials.

Nigeria, Africa's most populous country with more than 200 million people, has seen fewer coronavirus cases than many others on the continent.
Total cases crept past 80,000 on Wednesday, 30th December 2020. Daily recorded cases exceeded 1,000 for the first time this month.

There is no need to panic, commented by the World Health Organization. The strain comes and goes and every problem has a solution.

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