The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control on Tuesday afternoon announced that three additional cases of the Omicron variant have been reported.
The new cases bring the total of the recently discovered variant of the COVID-19 virus in Nigeria to six.
The PUNCH reports that the Omicron variant, which was first reported by South Africa, has been designated a ‘variant of concern’ by the World Health Organization.
Though the global health body says it is still launching investigations into the new strain, several countries such as the United Kingdom, Singapore, Canada among others have issued travel restrictions into their territories.
The NCDC in the statement signed by the Director-General, Ifedayo Adetifa further explained that the three additional cases were detected in passengers linked to South Africa in November.
The statement partly reads, “The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control has confirmed three more cases of COVID-19 with the B.1.1.529 SARS-CoV-2 lineage, i.e., the Omicron variant, in Nigeria.
“In addition to the three cases announced earlier on 1st December 2021, this brings the total number of confirmed cases of the Omicron variant detected in Nigeria to six. All the Omicron cases so far were detected in persons with recent travel history to South Africa in November.
“The NCDC through the National Reference Laboratory continues to coordinate genomic surveillance activities across the country to sequence all positive COVID-19 samples from international travellers arriving in Nigeria. This includes sequencing of positive samples from international travellers from October 2021 to date.
“The Delta variant remains the dominant variant and so far, we have not seen the replacement of this variant by the new Omicron variant as observed elsewhere.”