Nigeria: COVID-19 - PTF Lifts Ban On Religious Gathering, Shortens Curfew

2 June 2020

Mr. Boss Mustapha, the chairman, Presidential Task Force (PTF), on COVID-19, has said that the ban on religious gathering has been lifted based on guidelines and protocols agreed with state governments.

Mustapha, who is also the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, said this at the PTF on COVID-19 daily briefing on Monday in Abuja.

This is as the curfew from the current 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. had been shortened from 10 p.m. to 4 a.m., starting from Tuesday.

According to Mustapha, the relaxation of the restriction on places of worship is based on guidelines issued by the PTF and Protocols agreed by State Governments.

He, however, said bars, gyms, and nightclubs would remain closed.

"After considering all factors mentioned above, the PTF submitted its recommendations and the President has approved them for implementation over the next four weeks, spanning June 2, to June 29, subject to review," he said.

He said that there would be an application of science and data to guide the targeting of areas of high transmission of COVID-19 in the country.

He noted the mobilisation of resources at State and Local Government levels to create public awareness on COVID-19 and improve compliance with non-pharmaceutical interventions within communities.

According to him, sustenance of key non-pharmaceutical interventions will apply nationwide and includes a ban on gatherings of more than 20 people outside of the workplace.

Mustapha said the protocols include managing access to markets and locations of economic activity to limit the risk of transmission, Ban on inter-state travels except for the movement of agricultural produce, petroleum products, manufactured goods, and essential services.

Others are "mandatory use of non-medical face masks in public places; mandatory provision of handwashing facilities/sanitisers in all public places and extensive temperature checks in public places".

He added maintaining two metres between people in public places.

In his speech, the National Coordinator of PTF, Dr. Sanni Alihu, said that the aviation sector would be asked to prepare for the possible resumption of domestic flights from June 21.

Aliyu added that a national curfew would be shortened to 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. from Tuesday, from the current 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. order.

He explained that the nation's financial sector would also be able to resume normal working hours.

The National Coordinator stated that other curbs remained in place, such as a ban on interstate travel, with a few exceptions, such as for essential workers.

He added that face masks must still be worn in public.

NAN

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