Connect with us


Shop closures: Normalcy returns to Enugu metropolis after traders protest



Economic activities have returned to the Enugu metropolis after protest by some traders from Ogbete Main Market, Enugu, against sealing of their shops by the state government.

The traders in the protest, which started at about 9a.m. and lasted for about three hours, stopped vehicular and human activities along the Market Road, Ogui Road, and Okpara Avenue.

They were chanting and carrying placards with inscriptions “Gov. Mbah Unseal Our Shops for Peace to Reign”, “We Are Not Under Your Employ”; “You Will Not Dictate for Us How We Manage Our Lives” and “Mind the Governance in the State and Let Us Be”.

Some shops and banks on the roads closed their businesses for fear of apparent attacks by protesters.

Reacting, the Police Public Relations Officer in the state command, DSP Daniel Ndukwe, who confirmed the protest, said that the police in collaboration with other security agencies had maintained law and order in the state.


The command advised the traders to channel their grievances through appropriate and legitimate quarters.

“Normalcy has been restored at Ogbete Market Enugu and its surroundings, following the report of protest by some traders over the sealing of their shops by the state government.

“It was alleged that those whose shops were sealed attempted to force others, whose shops were not sealed, to close theirs and the entire market and join in the protest.

The initially peaceful protest was however, hijacked and made to become violent.

‘Traders in the market and citizens alike have been pleaded with to remain law-abiding, peaceful and cooperative, while using approved channels to express their grievances.


‘Full-scale investigation has been initiated on the orders of the Commissioner of Police, while further development, especially as it concerns reports of alleged casualties being circulated, will be communicated as soon as possible,” he said.

Speaking, a trader, Mr Innocent Eke, said that they were protesting the forceful and illegal sealing and closure of many shops in the market for not opening for business on Monday.

“The government is the authority in the state, we all understand this; however, the law also specify government’s boundaries,” Eke said.

Another trader, Mazi Nnamdi Onyekachi, said, “this is a democracy and the government must be civil in its approach on issues affecting the people at all times.

A trader who simply identified himself as Emeka told NAN that the protest started when traders whose shops were sealed by the state government on Monday found their shops locked with different keys.


He said that angered by the development, they embarked on a protest condemning the government actions.

NAN recalled that Enugu State Government On Monday sealed over 100 shops including two banks for observing the banned illegal sit at home order.

Among the shops affected were 78 at Ogbete Main market, including two banks located inside the market, 24 at Old Artisan Market, five at the SPAR Mall.

The exercise was carried out by the state government led by the governor, Mr Peter Mbah and the Enugu Capital Territory Development Authority (ECTDA).

The Secretary to the State Government, Prof. Chidiebere Onyia, had in a statement on Tuesday in Enugu said that all businesses that were sealed shall remain sealed for one week.


According to him, at the end of one week, the owners shall provide their current tax clearance certificates and all other relevant revenue documents to enable the state government to review and consider their formal letters for re-opening.


Diphtheria: Children at risk as 7,202 cases are confirmed in Nigeria



A staggering 7,202 cases of diphtheria, a highly contagious bacterial infection that can be fatal without treatment, were confirmed in Nigeria last week.

The outbreak has been particularly severe among children under 14, with three-quarters of cases (73.6%) in this age group.

Most cases have been recorded in Kano state, Nigeria’s second most populous state. In the past three months, there have been 453 deaths from diphtheria in Nigeria.

Diphtheria is a vaccine-preventable disease, but low vaccination rates in Nigeria have made the outbreak possible. Only 42% of children under 15 in Nigeria are fully protected from diphtheria.

Diphtheria symptoms begin with a sore throat and fever. In severe cases, the bacteria produce a toxin that can block the airway, causing difficulty breathing and swallowing. The toxin can also spread to other body parts, causing heart kidney problems and nerve damage.


Save the Children is launching a wide-scale health response in the three most impacted states of Kano, Yobe, and Katsina. The organization is deploying expert health and supply chain staff to help overstretched clinics detect and treat diphtheria cases and to support mass vaccination campaigns.

However, Save the Children warns that a mass vaccination campaign will only be successful if the vaccine shortage is urgently addressed.

Severe shortages in Nigeria of the required vaccine and the antitoxin needed to treat the disease mean that the situation could continue to escalate, placing many children at risk of severe illness and death.

Continue Reading


WHO releases $16m to tackle cholera, says Director-General



The World Health Organisation (WHO) has released 16 million dollars from the WHO Contingency Fund for Emergencies to tackle cholera.

Dr Tedros Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General said this during an online news conference.

Ghebreyesus said that the organisation was providing essential supplies, coordinating the on the ground response with partners, supporting countries to detect, prevent and treat cholera, and informing people how to protect themselves.

“To support this work, we have appealed for 160 million dollars, and we have released more than 16 million dollars from the WHO Contingency Fund for Emergencies.

“But the real solution to cholera lies in ensuring everyone has access to safe water and sanitation, which is an internationally recognized human right,” he said.


According to him, in the previous week, WHO published new data showing that cases reported in 2022 were more than double those in 2021.

He said that the preliminary data for 2023 suggested was likely to be even worse.

“So far, 28 countries have reported cases in 2023 compared with 16 during the same period in 2022.

“The countries with the most concerning outbreaks right now are Ethiopia, Haiti, Iraq and Sudan.

“Significant progress has been made in countries in Southern Africa, including Malawi, Mozambique and Zimbabwe, but these countries remain at risk as the rainy season approaches,” Ghebreyesus said.


According to him, the worst affected countries and communities are poor, without access to safe drinking water or toilets.

He said that they also face shortages of oral cholera vaccine and other supplies, as well as overstretched health workers, who are dealing with multiple disease outbreaks and other health emergencies.

On COVID-19, Ghebreyesus said that as the northern hemisphere winter approaches, the organisation continued to see concerning trends.

He said that among the relatively few countries that report them, both hospitalisations and ICU admissions have increased in the past 28 days, particularly in the Americas and Europe.

WHO boss said that meanwhile, vaccination levels among the most at-risk groups remained worryingly low.


“Two-thirds of the world’s population has received a complete primary series, but only one-third has received an additional, or “booster” dose.

“COVID-19 may no longer be the acute crisis it was two years ago, but that does not mean we can ignore it,” he said.

According to him, countries invested so much in building their systems to respond to COVID-19.

He urged countries to sustain those systems, to ensure people can be protected, tested and treated for COVID-19 and other infectious threats.

“That means sustaining systems for collaborative surveillance, community protection, safe and scalable care, access to countermeasures and coordination,” he said.

Continue Reading