COVID-19: Non-compliance With Social Distancing, Other Rules Shows Danger Lies Ahead – Boss Mustapha

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Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the PTF on COVID-19 has said the non-compliance of Nigerians to the social distancing rules, hand washing measures and others set to reduce the spread of the virus may portend danger for Nigeria.

Speaking at the daily briefing of the PTF, he thanked the House of Representatives for its guidance and support so far.

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“​The overall assessment of compliance with the measures and outcomes of modelling we have developed, point in the direction of danger ahead. We therefore need personal discipline, increased awareness and enforcement. The PTF calls on community, religious and traditional leaders to take up this challenge. Similarly, we call on, trade associations, professional bodies and organizations to compliment the efforts of government,” he said.

“The PTF appreciates your current efforts but it has become very obvious that more needs to be done, together.”

Assessing the effects of the lockdown ease so far, he said;

“Non-compliance with social/physical distancing guidelines evidenced by higher than advised congregation of people in banks, traffic gridlocks especially at entry points to metropolitan areas and disregard of guidelines on carrying capacity of motor vehicles;

• Increased level of inter-state movements worsened by the dubious concealment of people in food carrying vehicles;
• Unhygienic and ill-advised use and sharing of masks especially multiple fittings before buying from vendors.

“Once again, we appeal to the Governors to please align their plan for the movement of Almajiris with the ban imposed by the President. We shall intensify our dialogue on this matter.”

“As we continue to push the frontiers of risk communication, I wish to appeal to all Nigerians to be vigilant and desist from taking undue risks. The PTF recognises the challenges earlier encountered at the bank.

“We however assure you that the Central Bank of Nigeria as well as the Bankers’ Committee have put in place strategies that would reduce such re-occurrence. I, therefore plead with Nigerians to be patient and schedule their physical appearances at banks.

“On the other hand, I wish to repeat my call to the Banks to also quickly address issues related to difficulty with using their on-line platforms, especially re-validating expired ATM cards amongst others.

“In view of the fact that public transportation is a major clustering area through which the virus can easily be transmitted, we call on the leadership of various transport unions to properly enlighten their members on the dangers associated with non-adherence to the COVID-19 containment guidelines. We also urge them to educate their members on the ban imposed on Inter-state travels.

Mustapha said the NCDC has been on dialogue with the Kogi and Cross River State government’s time see ways they can move forward.

“We have continued to interface with the Governors and I am pleased to inform you that the NCDC will be visiting the Kogi and Cross Rivers States to provide support to the State EOCs. This is a giant leap in the dialogue and collaboration process. We are also retooling all Federal Medical Institutions as part of the overall support to the States.

“We have received a boost in the isolation facilities available in Abuja with the completion of the Abuja Thisday Dome. This facility will be inaugurated on Tuesday 12th May, 2020.
13.​The PTF and indeed Mr. President, is deeply worried about reports on the increasing rate of infection of medical doctors and personnel. While we renew our efforts at training these frontline workers about the infectious nature of this virus, we urge that utmost care be taken in managing COVID related cases.

“We have similarly received reports about the emerging situation in Isolation Centres in Gombe circulating in a viral video clip. We have investigated and I wish to assure you that the NCDC team is on ground in Gombe to support the State EOC. Similarly, I can confirm that the testing laboratory in Gombe will be activated soon.”