Omicron, WHO Gives New COVID Variant Name
The World Health Organisation (WHO) has designated the new COVID variant B.1.1.529, Omicron on Friday.
The organisation disclosed in a statement published on its website after its officials assessed data received from South Africa earlier today.
It said “The B.1.1.529 variant was first reported to WHO from South Africa on 24 November 2021. The epidemiological situation in South Africa has been characterized by three distinct peaks in reported cases, the latest of which was predominantly the Delta variant. In recent weeks, infections have increased steeply, coinciding with the detection of B.1.1.529 variant. The first known confirmed B.1.1.529 infection was from a specimen collected on 9 November 2021.”
“This variant has a large number of mutations, some of which are concerning. Preliminary evidence suggests an increased risk of reinfection with this variant, as compared to other VOCs. The number of cases of this variant appears to be increasing in almost all provinces in South Africa. Current SARS-CoV-2 PCR diagnostics continue to detect this variant. Several labs have indicated that for one widely used PCR test, one of the three target genes is not detected (called S gene dropout or S gene target failure) and this test can therefore be used as marker for this variant, pending sequencing confirmation. Using this approach, this variant has been detected at faster rates than previous surges in infection, suggesting that this variant may have a growth advantage.”
Therefore, countries are asked to do the following:
- enhance surveillance and sequencing efforts to better understand circulating SARS-CoV-2 variants.
- submit complete genome sequences and associated metadata to a publicly available database, such as GISAID.
- report initial cases/clusters associated with VOC infection to WHO through the IHR mechanism.
- where capacity exists and in coordination with the international community, perform field investigations and laboratory assessments to improve understanding of the potential impacts of the VOC on COVID-19 epidemiology, severity, effectiveness of public health and social measures, diagnostic methods, immune responses, antibody neutralization, or other relevant characteristics.
WHO said its independent Technical Advisory Group on SARS-CoV-2 Virus Evolution (TAG-VE) will continue to evaluate this variant and communicate new findings to member states.
On Friday, Belgium reported a case of Omicron variant covid in a traveler from Egypt while Hong Kong reported two cases.
The United Kingdom, US, Israel and others have imposed restrictions on flights from South Africa and other six nations to curb Omicron outbreak in the nations.
Npower to Pay All Outstanding Stipends, But Punish Absentees From PPA
Following the protest and complaints about non-payment of the monthly stipend, Npower has stated that all deserving beneficiaries will be paid while those who have been absent from their Place of Primary Assignments (PPA) will be punished.
Established in 2016 by the current administration, Npower is a federal government social intervention programme designed to empower the youth and address issues of unemployment.
Investors King understands that the Npower scheme has engaged millions of youth under several programmes including Npower Teach, Npower Health, and Npower Agro among others.
According to the statement which was posted on the official Twitter page of Npower, the scheme noted that it is working hard to ensure all backlogs are paid soon while salaries of absentees without formal communication with the appropriate body will hold for 45 days.
“We are working tirelessly to ensure that beneficiaries’ stipends and those with backlogs are cleared,” N-Power said on Twitter.
“We also want to make it clear that any beneficiary who is found absent In his/her primary place of assignment (PPA) without official permission from his/her supervisor will be placed on payment hold for 45 days,” N-Power said.
Npower further noted that the level of absentees from their PPA is alarming, stating that it is disheartening and any absentee who failed to be cleared and recommended for reinstatement by the state focal person will be exited from the program.
“We have received disheartening reports from our Monitoring and Evaluation team on some of our beneficiaries who do not report for work at their different PPAs.
“Furthermore, if at the end of the 45 days, there Is no official clearance letter for reinstatement of the beneficiary by the State Focal Person, the beneficiary will be exited from the N-Power Programme. Kindly be advised to stick to one as we are poised to implement the Terms of Engagement.” the warning read.
I Earn Over N20 Million Monthly –Comedian, Broda Shaggi
A popular Nigerian comedian and skit maker, Samuel Animashaun Perry known as Broda Shaggi says he makes over N20 million in a month on skit making.
This disclosure has drawn the attention of many especially social media users as they marvel at the proceeds of skit making, Investors King reports.
Broda Shaggi spoke on his earnings in an interview with a podcast show anchor, Ehiz Okoeguale known as Dadaboy Ehiz during his programme, ‘The Dadaboy Show’.
The famous 29-year-old actor stated that he makes over $40,000 a month off his YouTube channel with about 1.7 million subscribers.
Aside from YouTube and skit-making proceeds, he added that he anchors events and works with various brands as their ambassador as they need numbers, views, comments, which in turn fetches him more money.
Broda Shaggi harped on the number of followers and views, consistency, and sound content creation to become a successful skit maker.
His words, “I will try my best. It is numbers for you to make money. As a skit maker, it’s numbers and you have to be consistent. Consistency is very very very key.
“You have to be consistent always because then, you’ll have more content. And more content means more money. That’s if you’re on YouTube and you grow your platform well.
“And asides from YouTube, there are brands that want to penetrate into your brand as well to work with you. And all they look for is numbers. You know, like how many views, who’s watching, what’s the comment like, what’s the reach; you know. That’s where the money comes in. I make more than $40,000 but lower than $80,000 monthly,” Shaggi stated.
Estonia Offers Easiest Work Visa to Europe Amidst Low Applications
Estonia, a digital nation in northern Europe, has been ranked as the easiest European Country where a work visa can be obtained.
Investors King reports that application for the work visa can be done through the official ‘Work in Estonia website’ for a one year work visa with an option of renewal.
Estonia is rated the easiest country amongst other European countries to obtain a work visa because it accepts such visas massively. Though, its visa applications received are quite low when compared to others.
The work visa application fee is pegged at €100 while it is processed and made available in 30 days.
The visa package consists of visitation to other Schengen countries for not more than three months within 180 days, and a residency permit can be obtained after two months.
On the ‘Work in Estonia website’, new job opportunities in the countries are posted daily awaiting applications.
To apply for the work visa, here are the criteria:
- Be qualified physically and mentally for the job and receive a legitimate employment agreement. Thereafter your employer must register you with the Estonian Police and Border Guard Board.
- Provide all the requirements for an Estonian work visa such as a current passport, two passport-size photos, and an application form.
- Fill out the application form online. Select the long-stay D visa option, and make sure you fully complete it with all the correct information after which you print a hard copy and sign it at the end.
- You must pay for your visa application after completing the application form. When you present the documents at the consulate or embassy, you can make payment.
- With other requested documents, affix the payment receipt.
- A certificate of your legal health insurance. Your health insurance must have a coverage limit and be valid throughout the entire Schengen region. You will be covered by Estonian health insurance once you enter the country.
- Documents demonstrating that you have a place to stay while visiting Estonia, which should: Proof of lodging, lease or contract, an invitation letter, etc.
- A cover letter introducing the sender to the embassy.
- A criminal record. This document must be released by the police authorities in your home country and must demonstrate that you have a clean criminal record.
- Work agreement. The work contract must specify the nature of the work you will be performing in Estonia. It must include your salary, work hours, and so on. This document demonstrates that you have a job waiting for you in Estonia.
- Documents proving personal qualification. These documents demonstrate that you are qualified for the position for which you have applied. They should be a certificate of your educational level, CV, driving license (if applicable), etc.
- Registering employment in Estonia. Your employer must register your short-term employment in Estonia. This document allows you to work in Estonia until you receive your residence permit. For your employer to apply for your short-term employment, you must give them a copy of your passport, photo, and other required personal details. After that, you will receive an ID code, an 11-digit number used to identify your details in Estonia.
For an extension of the work visa to stay longer than the initial one-year plan, an application for a temporary residence permit is required after settling in the country which could run for up to five years and is still renewable. The renewal application must be done at least three working days before the visa expires. Also, the application must be submitted personally at any of the Police and Border Guard Board offices in Estonia.
Family members are welcomed on an Estonian work visa and they will be allowed to work, study and stay in the country. Family members are identified as spouse (partner), cohabiting partner, child (under the age of 18), and older relatives (if they are older than age 65) with health problems.
Here are other major highlights on working in Estonia:
- There is no such thing in Estonia as a special “work permit”. You can work there if your employer has registered your short-term employment and your stay is legal (e.g., you have a D-visa) or if you have a valid (temporary) residence permit for working.
- In Estonia, the average monthly wage is €1,150. The amount you earn each month depends on the job.
- Asides from rent, the average monthly expense in Estonia for a single person is (€661). You might have to pay as much as €188 per month for premium health insurance, depending on the type of insurer you select.
- You must initially apply for a temporary residence permit (for work up to 5 years with your first permit).
- You can apply for a long-term residence permit once you have been a temporary resident of Estonia for five years.
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