Nigeria: Lockdown Tough, but a Necessary Step to Curtail COVID-19 - Sanwo-Olu

30 March 2020

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Monday backed the restriction of movement in some states of the federation by President Muhammadu Buhari, describing it as a "tough but necessary step" to effectively curtail the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic in the country.

He, however, assured residents that the state government, in collaboration with Federal Government and other agencies and organisations would stop at nothing to curb the spread of the COVID-19 in the state and the country at large.

The governor, in a statement, also hailed residents of the state for their endurance since measures to fight the COVID-19 pandemic were announced by the government.

He acknowledged that no aspect of human life had been spared by the deadly disease, saying, "the Lagos State Government in partnership with the Federal Ministry of Health, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), the World Health Organisation (WHO) and UNICEF, among other institutions, would stop at nothing to halt its spread."

President Buhari had on Sunday announced a total restriction of movement in Lagos, Abuja, and Ogun with effect from 11:00 p.m. Monday, for 14 days in the first instance.

The restriction order, however, exempted only people rendering essential services such as health workers, manufacturers, and distributors of health equipment and drugs, food, and water companies.

Also allowed to move are workers in telecommunications, petroleum distribution and retailing as well as power companies and the media, among others "whose jobs cannot be handled at home."

Sanwo-Olu said: "We must co-operate with the authorities as long as this restriction lasts.

"I would also like to address the fears of those who have expressed some security concerns about your places of work and shops during this restriction. I have directed the police and other security agents to ensure that there are no security breaches. They will ensure that criminals do not take advantage of this important measure."

He, therefore, urged the private sector, market leaders and traders to move out inflammable materials such as petrol, kerosene, and others from their offices and shops before the restriction begins at 11:00 p.m. Monday, as well as switch off all electrical and electronic appliances to stave off fire incidents during the 14-day restriction.

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