By Monsuru Olowoopejo
In a bid to prevent the spread of coronavirus in Nigeria, Ogun State Government has banned high-density activities in religious centres, public and private schools in the state.
The State Government added that while activities in educational institutions would remain closed indefinitely after school hours on Friday, March, 20th, 2020, the ban on religious gathering that brings together 50 or more people takes immediate effect.
In a statement on Thursday by Chief Press Secretary to the Governor, Kunle Somorin, it stressed that the decision was taken to ramp up its efforts to contain the spread of coronavirus in the state.
It said: “The Government, therefore, enjoins all parents and guardians who have their children and wards in any boarding facility within the State to immediately evacuate them and return them to their respective homes at the close of schools on Friday, March 20th, 2020.
“Governor Dapo Abiodun thankfully acknowledges and appreciates religious leaders for their advice, understanding solidarity and support, as we jointly search for solution to the pandemic and for their cooperation to observe all safety measures in the overall interest of our State and common humanity.
“Governor Abiodun pleads for the understanding of parents, school owners and the entire citizenry to comply fully with all laid down measures and for them to offer useful information for the state to respond appropriately to the COVID-19 challenge.
“The government emphasizes the need to observe global best practice of social distancing as a way of curtailing the spread of the pandemic and recommends that as much as possible, people should minimize contact with others and maintain a distance of at least five feet between one another in public places or in public transportation. In addition, nonessential travels should be limited whilst also avoiding high-density gatherings”.
Earlier, the State Government stressed that enforcement on social gathering will be in effect for the next 30 days in the first instance, before possible review.
“This restriction has to be enforced without prejudice to people’s fundamental rights to association and movement because the safety of our people and their welfare are priorities that cannot be toyed with. The Government will continue to engage all the stakeholders, including our religious leaders to sensitise the populace on the need to maintain social distancing and collective effort to combat this pandemic.
“The Government will continue the surveillance initiatives and intensify sensitisation on COVID-19. This is more so given the peculiarity of its location as the Nation’s Gateway State and its industrial capital. Our epidemiologists and other health workers are working round the clock with Federal agencies and international development agencies to stop the spread of coronavirus.
“In view of the recent confirmed cases in the country, Governor Abiodun reassures the populace that no stone will be left unturned to ensure that the state is prepared at all times to respond appropriately. He further encourages people to maintain a high level of suspicion and report any suspected case to the appropriate authorities”.