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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.

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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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Covid-19: Moscow commences mass vaccination of Sputnik V shot

Moscow has commenced the distribution of Covid-19 vaccine, Sputnik V, through 70 clinics on Saturday, December 5, 2020,

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COVID-19 vaccine from Russia

Moscow has commenced the distribution of Covid-19 vaccine, Sputnik V, through 70 clinics on Saturday, December 5, 2020, marking Russia’s first mass inoculation against the disease that has infected over 2.4 million people in the country.

According to a report from Reuters, while making the disclosure, Moscow city’s coronavirus task force said that the Russian-made vaccine would first be made available to doctors and other medical workers, teachers and social workers because they have the highest risk of exposure to the disease.

The Russian capital, Moscow, which is the epicentre of the country’s coronavirus outbreak, reported 7,993 new cases overnight, a sharp increase from 6,868 that was recorded a day earlier and well above the reported daily infection rate of around 700 that was recorded in early September.

Mayor Sergei Sobyanin, on his personal website, wrote, “Over the first five hours, 5,000 people signed up for the jab – teachers, doctors, social workers, those who are today risking their health and lives the most.”

The age limit for those expected to receive the vaccine is capped at 60 years. It, however, bars people with certain underlying health conditions, pregnant women and those who have had respiratory illnesses for the past two weeks from being vaccinated.

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What you should know

It can be recalled that the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, in a televised government meeting, announced the registration of its first Covid-19 vaccine in what was described as a step ahead of any other vaccine development.

The Covid-19 vaccine, Sputnik V, which was developed by Gamaleya Research Institute of Epidemiology and Microbiology, in collaboration with the Russian Direct Investment Fund (RDIF), was certified to be 92% effective in protecting people from the virus infection.

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Russia has developed 2 Covid-19 vaccines namely, Sputnik V which is backed by the Russian Direct Investment Fund, and another by Siberia’s Vector Institute, with final trials for both yet to be completed.

Scientists have raised concerns about the safety and speed at which Russia had registered and approved its vaccine, giving the regulatory go-ahead for it and launching mass vaccinations before full trials to test its safety and efficacy had been completed.

The Sputnik V vaccine is administered in two injections, with the second dose expected to be given 21 days after the first.

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COVID-19: Moderna says it will produce 500 million vaccines by 2021

Moderna Inc, has said that the company has the capacity to produce up to 500 million coronavirus vaccines by 2021.

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Moderna COVID-19 vaccine passes safety test on animals

Stéphane Bancel, CEO of pharmaceutical company and Covid-19 vaccine maker, Moderna Inc, has said that the company has the capacity to produce up to 500 million coronavirus vaccines by 2021.

The CEO disclosed this at the Nasdaq Investor Conference, as reported by Reuters.

READ: Nigeria, others to receive first-ever HIV generic drug for babies in the first half of 2021

What you should know

  • Nairametrics reported last month that the pharmaceutical company had stated that its Covid-19 vaccine was 94.5% effective in treating coronavirus, after preliminary analysis of a large late-stage clinical trial.
  • UK Health Secretary, Matt Hancock announced in November that the UK had secured 5 million doses of the vaccine.

The company disclosed that they had applied for emergency use of the vaccine in the United States and EU after finalizing clinical trials which showed 94.1% efficacy, and would hold a December 17 meeting with the American Food and Drug Administration to discuss emergency use.

READ: Covid-19: First world nations oppose waiving intellectual rights for vaccine development

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For 500 million, I am very comfortable we are gonna get there (2021),” Bancel said at the Nasdaq Investor Conference.

The CEO added that the price for its vaccine would remain at $37 per dose, but expected it to fall to $25 as purchase volumes rose.

Moderna says up to 125 million doses of its Covid-19 vaccine will be supplied globally by the first quarter of 2021.

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COVID-19 Update in Nigeria

On the 4th of December 2020, 324 new confirmed cases were recorded in Nigeria

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The spread of novel Corona Virus Disease (COVID-19) in Nigeria continues to record significant increases as the latest statistics provided by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control reveal Nigeria now has 68,627 confirmed cases.

On the 4th of December 2020, 324 new confirmed cases were recorded in Nigeria, having carried out a total daily test of 7,101 samples across the country.

To date, 68,627 cases have been confirmed, 64,467 cases have been discharged and 1,179 deaths have been recorded in 36 states and the Federal Capital Territory. A total of 791,539 tests have been carried out as of December 4th, 2020 compared to 779,708 tests a day earlier.

COVID-19 Case Updates- 4th December 2020,

  • Total Number of Cases – 68,627
  • Total Number Discharged – 64,467
  • Total Deaths – 1,179
  • Total Tests Carried out – 791,539

According to the NCDC, the 324 new cases were reported from 11 states- Lagos (115), FCT (110), Kaduna (57), Taraba (9), Akwa Ibom (8), Plateau (6), Bauchi (4), Ekiti (4), Kano(4), Katsina (4) and Rivers (3).

Meanwhile, the latest numbers bring Lagos state total confirmed cases to 23,660, followed by Abuja (7,101), Plateau (3,910), Oyo (3,730), Kaduna (3,302), Rivers (3,009), Edo (2,705), Ogun (2,237), Delta (1,824), Kano (1,803), Ondo (1,728), Enugu (1,332),  Kwara (1,110), Ebonyi (1,055), Katsina (1,034), Osun (947), Gombe (938). Abia (926), Bauchi (782), and Borno (745).

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Imo State has recorded 681 cases, Nasarawa (507), Benue (496), Bayelsa (456),  Ekiti (381), Akwa Ibom (348), Jigawa (331), Niger (298), Anambra (285), Adamawa (261), Taraba (172), Sokoto (166), Yobe (100), Kebbi (93), Cross River (90), Zamfara (79), while Kogi state has recorded 5 cases only.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Western diplomats warn of disease explosion, poor handling by government

Lock Down and Curfew

In a move to combat the spread of the pandemic disease, President Muhammadu Buhari directed the cessation of all movements in Lagos and the FCT for an initial period of 14 days, which took effect from 11 pm on Monday, 30th March 2020.

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The movement restriction, which was extended by another two weeks period, has been partially put on hold with some businesses commencing operations from May 4. On April 27th, 2020, Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari declared an overnight curfew from 8 pm to 6 am across the country, as part of new measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19. This comes along with the phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos, and Ogun States, which took effect from Saturday, 2nd May 2020, at 9 am.

On Monday, 29th June 2020 the federal government extended the second phase of the eased lockdown by 4 weeks and approved interstate movement outside curfew hours with effect from July 1, 2020. Also, on Monday 27th July 2020, the federal government extended the second phase of eased lockdown by an additional one week.

On Thursday, 6th August 2020 the federal government through the secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 announced the extension of the second phase of eased lockdown by another four (4) weeks.

READ ALSO: Bill Gates says Trump’s WHO funding suspension is dangerous

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