The Federal Government has declared three days as public holidays to mark Christmas, Boxing Day, and New Year’s Day celebrations respectively.
The days set aside as public holidays by the central government for the celebration were Monday 27th, Tuesday 28th December 2021, and Monday, 3rd January 2022.
Announcing the days approved for the holidays, Minister of Interior, Rauf Aregbesola, felicitates with Christians and all Nigerians at home and in the Diaspora on this year’s Christmas and New Year celebrations.
Aregbesola, who made the declaration on behalf of the Federal Government on Wednesday, enjoins Christians to practice the doctrines of Christ, which include but were not limited to these– faith, hope, and love.
“We must emulate the life of Jesus Christ in His practice and teachings on Humility, Service, Compassion, Patience, Peace, and Righteousness, that His birth signifies. This will be the best way to portray Christ and celebrate his birth”, he noted.
He emphasizes that peace and security are two critical conditions for economic development and prosperity. He urges Christians and Nigerians to make the best use of this festive period to pray for the total eradication of insecurity bedeviling our dear nation.
Aregbesola strongly charges Nigerians not to be lulled into a false sense of security on the COVID-19 pandemic but to note that it is increasingly assuming a very dangerous and harmful dimension with the emergence of a virulent variant, Omicron.
Through a statement released by the Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Interior, Dr Shuaib Belgore, said: “This calls for deliberate responsibility and discipline on the part of all”.
He enjoined all to adhere strictly to and observe all the stipulated non-pharmaceutical protocols and guidelines such as wearing of facemasks, frequent washing of hands with soap and water, using of hand sanitizer, and avoidance of large groups. Also, he urges quick report to medical authorities of any respiratory illness observed in self and others before, during, and after the Yuletide.
Speaking further, the minister said this Yuletide calls for spartan discipline in order to prevent the spread of the virus in our community and the nation as a whole.
“Moderately celebrate the festival without large groupings and observe all the protocols stipulated by medical authorities. Take it as a point of personal responsibility to prevent the spread of the virus”, he added..
The Minister also assures that the Government has put in place effective measures for the security of lives and property and expects Nigerians to support the efforts of security agencies by providing useful information that will assist them in the performance of their duties.