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FG lists conditions to avoid another nationwide lockdown

By Monsurudeen Olowoopejo

The Federal Government has disclosed that for the country not to go under another round of national lockdown, Nigerians must urgently embrace all non-pharmaceutical protocols outlined by international and local health practitioners as a remedy for coronavirus spread.

It said that the number of positive cases recorded daily further indicated that the citizens were not adhering to the protocols set to flatten the virus curve in the country, saying, if these continued, another round of national lockdown could be imposed.

Announcing plans, the national coordinator of Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Dr. Sani Aliyu, on Thursday at the COVID-19 update briefing in Abuja, stressed that the protocols including use of facemasks, social distancing, limiting numbers of guest at public gatherings, and others were adopted to prevent restriction on movement across the country.

Aliyu said: “The issue we have in Nigeria is attitudinal. Presently, we are impatient and want to get things quickly fixed. My appeal to Nigerians is that we must arrest this issue at this stage before it further escalates beyond control.

“As the day rolls by, the figure could further increase because it has a direct correlation with the action that we engage in daily. And to reduce the spread, we must embrace the use of non-pharmaceutical products to prevent further spread. This is our daily appeal at this time. And we are doing this because it remains the best strategy to adopt at this time”, he added.

Also, the Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, added that the figures do not indicate that the country was adhering to the international protocols.

“Our records show that our test per million (TPM) is at 4,695 while our test positivity rate (TPR) is at 9.6 percent and our Case Fatality Rate has increased to 3 percent haven recorded 1,324 deaths, these data are not encouraging. Nigeria just crossed the 1million mark for testing across the federation. Testing remains a key strategy of our National Response”.

Following the statistics, Mustapha disclosed that the PTF was working to develop new Health Protection Regulations to support existing COVID-19 protocols and strengthen compliance with non-pharmaceutical interventions across the country.

“We call on the general public to remain focused on the drive to reduce the level of infection and make our country safe again. We urge the Sub-Nationals to enforce relevant measures that will help to curb the effect of this virus on our lives and livelihood”.

Appealing for compliance, the minister of State for Health, Dr. Olorunnimbe Mamora, appealed that the states should increase their testing and contact tracing to flatten the virus curve in the country.

According to him, the cooperation of the States with the Federal authorities is critical to our collective objective of defeating COVID-19.

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