FG extends lock down by one week

The Federal Government has announced an extension of the second phase of the eased lock down by one week with effect from July 29 to August 6.

Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, at the press briefing of the PTF, said the extension was considered due to the forthcoming Eid-el-Kabir celebration.

“We informed you two weeks ago that the process of submitting the sixth interim report and recommendations for the next steps had commenced. The PTF has reached advanced stages of the process.

“It has also considered that due to the upcoming Sallah (Eid-el-Kabir) festivities which coincide with the expiration of the current phase, it would be prudent to extend by one week, from July 29 till Thursday, August 6. It has accordingly secured permission to retain the existing guidelines till that date,” he said.

He said given the importance of international air travel to the economy, PTF and the aviation sector are working hard to fast track the reopening of the international airspace.

“Most importantly, the arrival protocols for passengers on in-bound flights are being firmed up for seamless testing and detection. Relevant Ministries, Departments and Agencies, MDAs, will be holding further consultations,” he added.

While warning that COVID-19 remains very virulent and dangerous, he appealed to Nigerians to have a change of behaviour in complying with safety guidelines and measures put in place.

He commended states that have shelved major activities marking the Eid-el-Kabir celebration, adding that the World Health Organization, WHO, has issued safe Eid practices.

Mustapha assured that the PTF is making steady progress in bringing more states within the national network and reporting system to enhance the outcome of the national response.

Meanwhile, the National Coordinator of the PTF, Dr. Sani Aliyu in his remarks advised Muslims to perform Eid prayers in smaller area mosques and avoid large gatherings.