Nigeria records 573 new coronavirus cases, 4 deaths

129 people were also released on Monday, raising the number of recovered patients to 5,349.

Coronavirus cases have been recorded in 35 states and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja [Twitter/@NCDCgov]

The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control announced late on Monday that the new cases were recorded in 19 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja.

Lagos recorded 216 new cases, according to Monday's update, followed by Rivers which recorded 103 new cases, and Oyo with 68 cases.

Oyo State governor, Seyi Makinde, announced earlier on Monday that schools and places of worship be reopened after weeks of shutting them down to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus.

Other states over the past week have similarly announced relaxations of restrictions that were earlier put in place, even though the country continues to witness an explosion of new cases daily.

For example, members of the All Progressives Congress (APC) will next week gather in their numbers to vote the party's flag bearer to contest in the September 19 governorship election. The state recorded 40 new cases on Monday.

Other states that recorded new cases on Monday are Kano (21), Gombe (20), FCT (17), Delta (13), Plateau (12), Bauchi (12), and Niger (10).

Nine new cases were recorded in Kebbi, eight each were recorded in Ogun and Ondo, seven in Abia, five in Nasarawa, and one each in Borno, Kwara, Benue, and Anambra.

Monday's update also showed that four new deaths have been recorded in the past 24 hours. Nigeria's total death toll rose to 424, according to the NCDC's statistics.

129 people were also released on Monday, raising the number of recovered patients to 5,349.

The chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, warned Nigerians on Monday that easing of restrictions is not a signal to start ignoring safety measures.

He said the task force has observed an escalation of non-compliance with simple measures to maintain social distancing, wear protective face masks, as well as regarding sanitation, and hygiene.

Mustapha said this non-compliance has been more prevalent in markets, motor parks, and places of worship, even though they have strict guidelines on how to operate in the current atmosphere.

He also raised concerns with reports that some state governors are already considering the reopening of schools, television viewing centres, sports stadiums, and other places where large gatherings can take place.

He said state governors should strongly take a cue from guidelines recommended by the task force.

"The Presidential Task Force re-emphasises that it's not yet safe to do so and that utmost caution should be exercised in this regard," he said.

He urged Nigerians not to panic but to cooperate with public health officials especially where community testing is ongoing.

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