Nigeria has 46 cases of coronavirus with two people recovering and no fatality according to worldometer.info as at press time (March 25). This means 30.2% of those tested in Nigeria are positive. Nigeria’s 30.2% of positive cases out of those tested is much more higher than that of South Africa, considering the percentage difference
However, the low number of coronavirus cases in Nigeria (42 as at March 25) may not be reliable as the most populous nation in Africa has only tested about 152 people as at March 22.
This poor number of testing results may be because local authorities are not testing enough people or the awareness to test when Covid-19 symptoms are evident is not strong.
According to qz.com: “The latest available report by Nigeria’s Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) shows the country had tested only 152 people as of Mar. 22. That’s compared with South Africa which has conducted over 15,500 tests so far despite recording its index case a week later than Nigeria”.
If 46 people have tested positive for coronavirus out of the 150 tested, it may be theorised that over 30% of people tested are positive.
Additionally, Nigeria is big on self medication, herbal remedy and low propensity to attend hospitals, which may keep some people who may have tested positive out of the radar for testing. In some cases, people may have stay away from testing out of fear being stigmatised.
Currently, Nigeria has 30.02% percent of positive cases of coronavirus judging from the 46 people who tested positive among the 152 tests conducted. Meanwhile South Africa has less than 1% percent positive cases – 702 tested positive out of total tests of 15,500.
Nigeria’s backwardness in the coronavirus tests and positive cases also point to the challenge of lack of capacity to do the test locally on a large scale.
This may suggest that there are more people on ground waiting to be tested but public health infrastructure cannot meet the demand for tests and care.
In the same vein, it has been discovered that the country has fewer than 500 ventilators across the entire country. This validates Nigeria’s lack of enough preparedness to manage the pandemic spread across the country.