COVID -19: Nigerians risk fresh lockdown as govt officials decry violations

Nigerians may have to endure another round of lockdown as Federal Government struggles to curtail the spread of coronavirus.
Indications on the possibility of this have emerged as top senior federal government officials have complained of the violations of lockdown rules.
On Wednesday, the Minister of Trade and Investment, Niyi Adebayo, frowned at the deliberate disobedience of the guidelines.
The minister lamented that physical distancing, wearing of face masks in the public, among others, were being shunned.
Adebayo spoke at the weekly briefing of the Emergency Operation Centre (EOC) of the Committee on Sustainable Production and Delivery of Essential Commodities During COVID-19.
He recalled that President Muhammadu Buhari, in his nationwide broadcast, was clear on guidelines on the first phase of the new measures spanning May 4 to May 17, 2020.
The minister pointed out the worrisome scenes observed around the banks’ premises could continue to pose severe danger of infection of COVID-19 and warned that mass gatherings could compromise measures put in place to tackle the spread of the pandemic.
Similarly, Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, stated that the danger of coronavirus infection was not over.
On Monday, Mustapha, Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, said they have been monitoring the level of compliance.
He said observations showed lack of compliance with social distancing and wearing of masks.
“We note particularly the chaotic scenes around the banks and other financial institutions. We urge citizens to minimize the risk of getting infected while trying to transact in the banks.
“We similarly urge the banks to ensure that their ATMs and online banking systems are in good order and stocked regularly to avoid convergence of customers in their premises,” Boss appealed.
With the situations across the country, there are expectations in some quarters that a fresh ‘stay at home’ order might be announced.
The PTF, in its guidelines, said level of compliance “will be reviewed in two weeks before additional guidelines for Phase 2”.
The fortnight referenced will be May 18, a date that could be the take-off of another round of lockdown.

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