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Inter-state travel ban, curfew to continue for two weeks

From Bolaji Ogundele, Abuja

  • Nation not ripe for end of lockdown, says Buhari
  • Schools, worship centres, airports to remain shut

The measures imposed on the nation by President Muhammadu Buhari in the first phase of the eased lockdown will continue for two weeks, the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 Control, said on Monday.

The measures announced by the President in an April 27 broadcast, which took effect on May 4, include:

  • Ban on non-essential inter-state movement
  • Nationwide 8pm to 6am curfew
  • Observance of personal hygiene, social distancing and wearing of face masks and
  • Restriction on religious and social gatherings.

After reviewing the situation since the guidelines went into operation, the Federal Government decided it was not yet time to completely ease the lockdown.

The continuation of the measures will expire on June 1.

Unveiling the development on Monday, PTF Chairman Boss Mustapha, who led some of the members to brief President Buhari on Sunday, said: “Ladies and gentlemen, the reality is that in spite of the modest progress made, Nigeria is not yet ready for full opening of the economy and tough decisions have to be taken for the good of the greater majority. Any relaxation will only portend grave danger for our populace.

“Advisedly, the current phase of eased restriction will be maintained for another two weeks during which stricter enforcement and persuasion measures will be pursued.

“The two weeks extension of Phase one of the eased restriction is also to enable other segments of the economy prepare adequately for compliance with the guidelines, preparatory to reopening in the coming weeks.

“For the PTF, we share your pains but our future is in the hands of every Nigerian and future decisions will depend greatly on our compliance.

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