By Monsuru Olowoopejo
After reviewing the appeal from Nigeria Governors Forum and the socio-economic impact of coronavirus in Nigeria, President Muhammadu Buhari has relaxed lockdown earlier imposed on Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja, Lagos, and Ogun States, to flatten COVID-19 curve in the country.
Buhari added that the relaxation of lockdown in the three states would start in phases on Monday, 4th May, 2020 at 9am and would be replaced with an overnight curfew which starts from 8pm to 6am, stressing that movements will be prohibited during this period and that full restriction on inter-state movement across the country would be enforced except for essential service providers.
The President, who relaxed the lockdown during a state broadcast to intimate Nigerians on achievement recorded in the fight against coronavirus on Monday night, imposed a total lockdown on Kano State and assured the Government that necessary human, material and technical resources to ensure COVID-19 circle is flattened would be deployed.
He said: “In line with the recommendations of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, the various Federal Government committees that have reviewed socio-economic matters and the Nigeria Governors Forum, I have approved for a phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos and Ogun States effective from Saturday, 2nd May, 2020 at 9am.
“However, this will be followed strictly with aggressive reinforcement of testing and contact tracing measures while allowing the restoration of some economic and business activities in certain sectors.
“There will be an overnight curfew from 8pm to 6am. This means all movements are will be prohibited during this period except essential services and that there will be a ban on non-essential inter-state passenger travels until further notice.
“There will be Partial and controlled interstate movement of goods and services will be allowed from producers to consumers but everyone must use face masks or coverings in public in addition to maintaining physical distancing and personal hygiene.
“Furthermore, the restrictions on social and religious gathers shall remain in place. State Governments, corporate organizations, and philanthropists are encouraged to support the production of cloth masks for citizens.