COVID-19: Total Lockdown Looms over Nigeria

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Nigeria's president, Muhammadu Buhari may impose a nationwide lock-down

There are indications that authorities in Nigeria, especially those managing the spread of COVID-19 pandemic, are considering a total lock-down on the entire country as a final resort.

Concerned by the surge in the number of confirmed cases of the pandemic, as well as the spread of the virus from the initial three states locked down by President Buhari to other states in the past week, the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 is brazing up for the possibility of a holistic lock-down.

The task force, which Judicial Sketch gathered would meet with the president on Friday, was said to have been convinced that a nationwide lockdown would be far more effective in curtailing the spread of the virus.

This sentiment was echoed at a meeting between the task force and the leadership of the National Assembly on Thursday, when the Task Force said it had data to justify lockdown of parts or all of the states in the country.

“There is acquisition of intelligence data to guide implementation of control measures such as may emanate from restrictions and or lockdowns of parts or all of the states,” said the chairman of the Task Force.

According to a member of the Task Force, this position was ignited by the need to give health workers “better latitude to conduct more tests and go ‘contact-hunting.’”

He said “because cases have spread from Abuja, Lagos and Ogun to Kaduna, Ondo, Bauchi, Oyo, Osun, Delta, Enugu, Edo, Ekiti, Rivers, Benue, Akwa Ibom,  Kwara and Katsina states, while the number has more than doubled in the past week, we are seriously considering a more decisive measure.”

He however said the final decision would have to come from the president and commander-in-chief. Ours is to submit our reports and recommendations.”



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