By Bayo Onanuga
How many people died of COVID-19 in Nigeria on 27 December? According to the figure published by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control, seven died.
But was it really seven or eight?
The agency affirmed its figure by updating its infographics to reflect the new death toll of 1,254, rising from 1,247 of 26 December.
But data published by NCDC on its website contradicted the number of deaths.
According to the data, not seven but eight people died.
On 26 December, NCDC had put the death toll in Lagos at 238.
That changed on Sunday, when the agency attributed three new deaths to the state. The death toll is now 241.
NCDC also updated Rivers death toll from 63 to 64 and Kano’s from 60 to 61.
If one adds the two new deaths recorded in the two states to the three in Lagos, the total is five fatalities already.
Then NCDC also jacked up the death toll in Bauchi from 14 on 26 December to 17 on 27 December.
That by our our mathematics, shows that eight persons died and not seven.
It was not the first time that P.M.News caught NCDC red-handed in wonky arithmetic.
On 24 October, NCDC published that 77 new COVID-19 cases were reported in the country from 11 states and Abuja.
But the agency muddled things up, from Twitter to its website, when it gave Lagos 71 cases out of 77, Kaduna 20, Rivers 19, FCT 4, Osun 3, Ondo 2, Sokoto and Ogun one each.
The error, which was later corrected, without apology, came from the cases ascribed to Lagos. They were 21 and not 71.
We expect NCDC to make similar correction: eight people died on 27 December and not seven. Unless they are saying their website data are not reliable.
Now compare and contrast the NCDC data for 26 December and 27 December and check data for Lagos, Rivers, Kano and Bauchi:
First data for 26 December:
Data for 27 December: