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Coronavirus

FCMB shuts contact centre locations due to COVID-19 scare

Other banks have recently had to shut down their branches due to public health concerns caused by COVID-19.

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FCMB contact centre

First City Monument Bank (FCMB) Limited informed its customers, yesterday, that its contact centre locations have all been temporarily shut down following COVID-19 scare.

A brief statement that was issued via Twitter emphasised that the general shutdown of the physical locations is only a temporary and precautionary measure aimed at preventing further spread of the contagious virus. The statement, however, did not clarify whether there have been any reported cases of infection at these contact centre locations.

“Dear Customers, we trust you are doing well and staying safe. We would like to inform you about the temporary closure of one of our Contact Centre locations as a precautionary measure to curtail the spread of COVID-19 and protect our employees,” part of the statement said.

Meanwhile, customers were informed that FCMB’s contact centres will remain active in the meantime, albeit virtually. However, customers may experience delays prior to being attended to. Customers were also advised to explore the self-help options offered by the bank’s electronic banking channels in order to resolve their challenges.

Nairametrics understands that some of the bank’s customers have been experiencing some ‘not so great’ customer service over the past few weeks. One of these customers, who chose not to be named, confirmed this to Nairametrics. Reacting to the statement by the bank, the customer said:

“This statement explains why the bank has not been responding to complaints across all its channels. For at least 4 weeks now, they don’t respond to emails, WhatsApp messages or DMs. I have some funds that they have not reversed in like 4 weeks now. If you check Twitter, you will see so many similar complaints.”

Recall that some other banks have had to close down their branches due to the same reason given by FCMB. Just recently, Jaiz Bank Plc shut down its Ikeja branch for disinfection. Weeks before that, Wema Bank also confirmed that two of its branches were temporarily shut down after two staff became infected with the virus.

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Emmanuel is a professional writer and business journalist, with interests covering Banking & Finance, Mergers and Acquisitions, Corporate Profiles, Brand Communication, Fintech, and MSMEs.He initially joined Nairametrics as an all-round Business Analyst, but later began focusing on and covering the financial services sector. He has also held various leadership roles, including Senior Editor, QAQC Lead, and Deputy Managing Editor.Emmanuel holds an M.Sc in International Relations from the University of Ibadan, graduating with Distinction. He also graduated with a Second Class Honours (Upper Division) from the Department of Philosophy & Logic, University of Ibadan.If you have a scoop for him, you may contact him via his email- [email protected] You may also contact him through various social media platforms, preferably LinkedIn and Twitter.

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Coronavirus

FG denies report on reintroduction of Covid-19 restrictions, clarifies position

The FG has denied media reports that it has reintroduced new Covid-19 restrictions as part of measures to curb the spread of the new India variant into the country.

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FG publishes list of suspended passports for refusing post-arrival Covid-19 test

The Federal Government has denied media reports that it has reintroduced new Covid-19 restrictions as part of measures to curb the spread of the new India variant into the country.

The government explained that it was only maintaining the curfew under phase 4 of the phased restriction of movement adding that it never relaxed the curfew imposed earlier under phase 3 of the eased lockdown.

This clarification was made by the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and chairman of the Presidential Steering Committee, (PSC) on Covid-19, Mr Boss Mustapha, on Monday, saying that it was erroneously reported.

Mustapha said the announcement by the National Incident Manager, Dr Mukhtar Mohammed, during the PSC press briefing was taken out of context because the federal government did not relax the curfew imposed earlier under Phase 3 of the eased lockdown.

What the SGF is saying

Mustapha said, “Under the Fourth Phase of restriction of movement, night clubs, gyms and others will remain closed till further notice; while all citizens will also ensure that mass gatherings outside work settings do not exceed a maximum of 50 people in an enclosed space.

These restrictions have been in existence under the Third Phase but are being maintained under Phase Four of the phased restriction of movement.’

He further said because people had been violating the safety protocols, they had forgotten that the protocols were never relaxed in the first place.

The SGF said, “Therefore, the PSC hereby reiterates that there is no newly introduced lockdown. There is no need for the panic that followed the announcement of the Fourth Phase of the phased restriction of movement.

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We will continue to appeal to members of the public to comply with these restrictions because they are necessary safety measures against contracting the dreaded coronavirus, which is still ravaging human populations across the world.’

Also, the Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, at a meeting with Online Publishers on Tuesday, in Lagos, denied reports on the introduction or even reintroduction of new restrictions on Covid-19.

Alhaji Lai Mohammed said there were no new restrictions, adding that the PSC on Covid-19 only reiterated existing regulations to control the spread of the disease. He said the only thing that was newly introduced was that anyone, including Nigerians travelling from Brazil, Turkey or India, must go through compulsory quarantine.

In case you missed it

It can be recalled that there were media reports that the Federal Government had reintroduced Covid-19 restrictions across all 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) following the disturbing resurgence of the coronavirus pandemic with the new India variant.

President Muhammadu Buhari had approved the transition of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on Covid-19 to PSC on Covid-19, with effect from April 1, 2021, with a modified mandate to reflect the non-emergent status of Covid-19 as a potentially long-term pandemic.

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Coronavirus

FG approves second dose of AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccine for eligible Nigerians

The NPHCDA boss urged Nigerians to continue to cooperate with vaccinators who are providing an incredibly important service to the nation amid this global crisis.

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109 million Nigerians to be vaccinated in 2 years - NPHCDA

The Federal Government has given the green light for the commencement of the administering of the second dose of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines on eligible Nigerians who received the first shots.

This disclosure was made by the Executive Director of the National Primary Health Care Development Agency (NPHCDA), Dr Faisal Shuaib, during the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) briefing in Abuja on Monday.

Shuaib advised health workers, frontline workers aged 18 years and above and persons aged 50 years and above to visit any designated vaccination site to receive the vaccine free of charge.

READ: Vaccine IP waiver: What it means for Nigerian vaccine production

What the Executive Director of NPHCDA is saying

Shuaib in his statement said, “I want to remind you that the eligibility period between the first and second doses of the vaccine has been expanded from 12 weeks to between six to 12 weeks, in line with the scientific recommendation provided by the World Health Organisation’s Strategic Advisory Group of Experts (SAGE on immunization).

The PSC has approved the second dose of the Oxford-Astrazeneca vaccination in all states of the federation and the FCT. We have redeployed Senior Supervisors to the states and have continued to monitor activities with daily evening review meetings to determine the status of the COVID-19 vaccine implementation in all states and the FCT.

These meetings, allows us to receive reports from the sub-national level on how the campaigns are proceeding, what challenges they face, and how we can proactively anticipate and resolve any impending challenges.

The meetings also provide an avenue to troubleshoot and resolve any operational hurdles as they emerge, before they become problematic,” he explained.

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READ: Covid-19: WHO approves China’s Sinopharm vaccine

He said that the agency is at the forefront of the Covid-19 vaccination campaign at the community level with town hall meetings across the country, just as was done for the poliovirus eradication fight.

The NPHCDA said, “Already we held the North-Central Zonal Town Hall Meeting two weeks ago in Lafia, the capital of Nasarawa state.

In weeks ahead, the agency hopes to continue the dialogue in other geo-political zones of the country. The town hall meetings afford the communities the opportunity to directly participate in dialogue with the government as we work to protect the people against the pandemic.

We know that many people are very concerned about the health threats posed by COVID-19, but also about the economic threats. The meetings allow for views and concerns to be heard as we work together to move beyond COVID-19 as a nation,” he said.

READ: Meet the 35-year-old German billionaire whose company manufactures the AstraZeneca vaccine

The NPHCDA boss urged Nigerians to continue to cooperate with vaccinators who were providing an incredibly important service to the nation amid this global crisis.

Jaiz bank

He said, “The need to protect ourselves and put COVID-19 behind us, the way we have done to polio so that we can return to our normal living, truly is a national effort.’’

What you should know

It can be recalled that on March 5, 2021, the vaccination of citizens against Covid-19 commenced with frontline healthcare workers, who are often at the risk of exposure to infections, including Covid-19, as they are the first responders to patients.

This follows the delivery of about 4 million doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca Covid-19 vaccines to the country through the Covid-19 Vaccines Global Assess Facility (COVAX).

The 4 million doses are part of the 16 million doses of AstraZeneca vaccines planned to be delivered to Nigeria in batches over the next weeks.

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