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Nigeria extends second phase of COVID-19 eased lockdown by four weeks

The Federal Government of Nigeria on Monday, June 29, 2020 extended the Phase II of the eased lockdown by another four weeks with effect from Tuesday, June 30.

Boss Mustapha
Boss Mustapha, Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF)

Mr Boss Mustapha, the chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), said this on Monday at the daily briefing in Abuja.

“I am pleased to inform you that Mr President has carefully considered the 5th Interim Report of the PTF and has accordingly approved.

“That with the exception of some modifications to be expatiated upon later, the phase two of the eased lockdown be extended by another four weeks with effect from Tuesday, June 30,’’ Mustapha said.

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He stated that this would run through midnight of Monday, July 27, 2020, adding however that certain measures shall either remain in place or come into effect.

His words: “We shall be maintaining the current phase of the national response for another four weeks in line with modifications to be expatiated by the National Coordinator.

“There will be permission of movement across state borders only outside curfew hours with effect from July 1, 2020, enforcement of laws around non-pharmaceutical interventions by states.”

He added that, in particular, the use of face masks in public places would be mandated.

According to Mustapha, there will be safe reopening of schools to allow students in graduating classes resume in-person in preparation for examinations.

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“Safe reopening of domestic aviation services as soon as practicable and publication of revised guidelines around the three thematic areas of general movement, industry, labour and community activities.’’

He listed others to include provision of technical support for states to mobilise additional resources for the response and strengthening partnerships with States, Local Governments and traditional rulers.

Others are community, religious leaders and civil society to ensure increased public awareness and compliance with preventive guidelines.

Mustapha said the task force would encourage state governments to empower Local Government Authorities to intensify contact tracing efforts and ensure stronger grassroots mobilisation to support the response.

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He added that it would also encourage states and hospital authorities to ensure continuity of other health services to prevent fatalities from other life-threatening conditions during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mustapha said it was necessary to deepen collaboration with other mandate groups at states and federal levels to harmonise the country’s COVID-19 response in the short, medium and long terms.

By Abujah Racheal

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