Coronavirus: Why Lockdown Wasn’t Lifted – PTF Reveals


The Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 on Monday explained why the lockdown across states won’t be fully lifted yet.

PFT declared that “any relaxation will only portend grave danger for our populace.”

It also listed the new directives approved by President Muhammadu Buhari.

PTF Chairman and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) spoke during a national briefing.

In the full text of his 40-point remarks seen by us, Mustapha announced that the first phase of the federal government’s three-pronged strategy had been reviewed.

He said measures put in place yielded progress that requires consolidation to ensure that the health system and economy are in a position to adequately respond to any potential outcomes in the future, including a secondary outbreak.

PTF noted that the gradual re-opening of the economy has been sign-posted by the controlled opening, increased access to markets, supermarkets, banks and other income yielding activities for the vulnerable population.

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Mustapha said going forward; PTF shall intensify the mobilization of individuals, especially the communities to take ownership of the fight.

This, according to him, will be accompanied by a development of infrastructure and other public health measures to be undertaken in every community and at every phase of the response – surveillance, case finding, testing, isolation, tracing and quarantining contacts.

Mustapha added:

“The reality is that in spite of the modest progress made, Nigeria is not yet ready for full opening of the economy and tough decisions have to be taken for the good of the greater majority.

Advisedly, the current phase of eased restriction will be maintained for another two weeks during which stricter enforcement and persuasion measures will be pursued.

“The two weeks extension of phase one of the eased restriction is also to enable other segments of the economy to prepare adequately for compliance with the guidelines, preparatory to reopening in the coming weeks.

For the PTF, we share your pains but our future is in the hands of every Nigerian and future decisions will depend greatly on our compliance.

“Based on PTF recommendations, Mr. President has approved that the measures, exemptions, advisories and scope of entities allowed to reopen under phase one of the eased locked down, shall be maintained across the federation for another two weeks effective from 12 midnight today (18th May, 2020 to 1st June, 2020); intensifying efforts to tell (communicate), trace (identify) and treat (manage) cases.

“Others are elevating the level of community ownership of non-pharmaceutical interventions; Maintain the existing lockdown order in Kano for an additional two weeks; Imposition of precision lockdown in states, or in metropolitan/high-burden LGAs, that are reporting a rapidly increasing number of cases, when the need arises.

“State Governors are reminded to align their state-specific measures with the guidelines issued by the Presidential Task Force.

The level of compliance has been reviewed and a specific directive has been issued to the security agencies to carry out strict enforcement of all measures.

“These include the nationwide curfew from 8.00 pm to 6.00 pm; the ban on interstate travels and the wearing of facemasks/coverings in public.

Security agents are however urged to be mindful of the human rights of citizens, while citizens are equally urged to recognize the dangers posed to self, their loved ones and the entire community if they fail to take responsibility.”

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Source: News update


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