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FG rolls out rules for gradual re-opening of businesses, offices …begins search for local solutions to COVID-19

The National Coordinator of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID19, Sani Aliyu on Wednesday named specific businesses and companies, as well as government offices that would be allowed to operate after government lockdown measures are partially relaxed on Monday.
Those allowed to operate as the gradual, phased lock-down easing takes effect on Monday include financial institutions such banks, construction sites and food processing companies, as well as neighbouring markets and supermarkets.
Tracking COVID-19 in Nigeria
Total Coronavirus Cases, April 29
1,532

Total Coronavirus Deaths, April 29
44

Change in NSE ASI year to date
-15

Balance in Excess Crude Account, Dec 2019 (million)
$70

Brent Crude ($ per barrel)
23
Aliyu, however said social centers and academic institutions will remain closed.
He explained that government was actually not easing the lock down but shifting to another level of intervention as I t battles the fast spreading coronavirus.

According to him, banks would be allowed to open from 8am -2pm, while offices and government agencies, would resume but based on specific grade levels to reduce the amount of congestion in the offices.
“Neighbouring markets would continue to open with the same standard restrictions we have applied in the past including supermarkets and retail stores.

“Restaurants would not be open to the public but would be allowed to engage home delivery of food.

“Academic institutions and social engagements remain closed till further evaluation,  schools remain closed till further notice but teachers can continue with online method of teaching and learning,” he explained.

According to him, Social centers such as the use of the recreational parks, theatres, parties or clubs are suspended till further review.

While advising people to restrict themselves to their localities, Aliyu explained that “for inter state travels, the restriction is only exempted for those supplying essential goods and commodities such as  agricultural products, petroleum products, corrier services and relief items.

“For intral-state state travels, there are certain aspects that we must emphasise across the borders, whether you are transport businesses, you are companies, you must make sure that you provide sanitizers to your customers.

He maintained that everyone is now expected to use face mask and that temperature checks would be introduced to ensure that respiratory hygiene is followed, while there should not be a gathering of more than twenty persons.

“For the aspect of agriculture and rural development, companies invovled in food production and processing, and construction sites would be allowed but people must make sure they observe social distancing.

The federal government has also mandated those offices, premises and businesses that will be gradually re-opening to take some key preparatory steps, including fumigation and decontamination and as well make arrangements for physical distancing as they resume operations.

Other new rules, according to Boss Mustapha, Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 include provision of hand sanitizers and hand washing facilities; as well as ensure mandatory use of face masks.

The introduced guidelines come ahead of the gradual relaxation of lockdown measures in Lagos, Ogun and the Federal capital Territory FCT, and two weeks lockdown in Kano state to contain coronavirus spread, and according to the SGF, the gradual reopening of the economy will span a total of 6 weeks broken into 3 tranches of 2 weeks each”

Speaking during the daily briefing, Mustapha said such offices and businesses must provide thermometers for temperature checks; make adequate provisions for persons living with disabilities while making all these arrangements; put measures in place to increase communication with staff on COVID-19 and measures put in place; and other measure that may be peculiar for the organisations and/or sector.

The SGF also re-emphasised that “mass gathering of more than 20 people outside of a workplace is strictly prohibited; controlled access to neighborhood markets and locations of economic activities will be enforced; mandatory temperature checks will be conducted in public places; social distancing of 2 metres to be maintained between people in workplaces and other public places.

Meanwhile, all passenger flights remain under ban while government continues to enforce mandatory supervised isolation of persons arriving from outside the country for at least 14 days.

Mustapha reiterated that the overnight curfew would be applicable nationwide from 8.00pm to 06.00am
 daily, effective Monday, 4th of May, 2020, adding, ” Inter-State travels are banned except for the movement of goods, agro-products, petroleum products, essential services as directed by President Buhari.

According to him, “This phased strategy is designed to reduce the pains of socio-economic disruptions while strengthening our public health response, which would ultimately reduce the recovery of our economy and provide succour to the poor and vulnerable”

He therefore, urged Sub-National levels of Government, to provide leadership in engaging relevant associations responsible for various sectors, including market associations and transport unions for orderly and effective implementation.

The SGF also called security agencies to strictly enforce these new measures that have been put in place.

Reiterating the need for increase in local research, Mustapha said local scientists must deepen its capacity and be encouraged considering the huge role all relevant research institutes need to play at this time.

“The Federal Ministry of Health is coordinating the process in conjunction with the National Institute for Medical Research and the Nigerian Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development.

“We have received information on domestic and international claims about emerging inventions on COVID-19. These are most welcome but scientific validation process and protocols will have to be followed. We are open to all options for the good of humanity.

At the briefing, Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said there was no end in sight yet to the Covid-19 pandemic in the country, as he saluted all health workers and every Nigerians playing a role in response to the pandemic for their hardwork and sacrifices they are making.

The DG regretted that even some member of his team have contracted the virus. He however urged them and indeed all Nigerians to persevere with the assurance that government is working to get the country back on track again.

“Many people are away from their families for six-weeks to two months, they work very hard with no end in sight at the moment, yet they have no option every morning they have to wake up and continue pushing.

“A number of people in my own team that have sadly become infected themselves as part of the response in the line of duty.

” I spoke to them and they ended up encouraging me and the PTF to keep pushing for the future of the country.

“So, today I want to thank all of them, whether you are working clinically, a public health, surveillance officer, a driver, or any part you play in this response not to give up, we need all if you to keep pushing.

“So wherever you are in Nigeria responding to this outbreak, I ask you to persevere, we will see the light at the end of the tunnel.

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire requested Members of the National Assembly and State Houses of Assemblies to get involved in the Covid-19 disease surveillance and notification efforts in their constituencies and to actively support the drive to rapidly increase bed spaces for Isolation and treatment in their States.

Ehanire also called on all  States and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to give first line attention to the provision of Isolation Centres and more bed spaces so as not to be taken by surprise, especially as the lockdown is being relaxed from Monday.

He explained that the increasing figure of confirmed cases underscores the ongoing community transmission, which is a major challenge that necessitated more calls on all citizens not to take this Covid-19 lightly.

The Minister advised Nigerians to take ownership of the initiatives for non-pharmaceutical interventions with strict adherence to public health advisories such as to social distance, practise hand and respiratory hygiene, avoid crowded places and wear mask or a face covering when going, failure which will throw up negative effects.

He strongly urged those who test positive for Covid-19 to cooperate with the directives of authorities, on Isolation, so as not to constitute a risk and a cause for public concern.

The Minister also said the Federal Ministry of Health has completed plans to start training and capacity building of much needed Intensive Care workforce for various parts of the country. SOURCE BUSINESSS DAY

“Neighbouring markets would continue to open with the same standard restrictions we have applied in the past including supermarkets and retail stores.

“Restaurants would not be open to the public but would be allowed to engage home delivery of food.

“Academic institutions and social engagements remain closed till further evaluation,  schools remain closed till further notice but teachers can continue with online method of teaching and learning,” he explained.

According to him, Social centers such as the use of the recreational parks, theatres, parties or clubs are suspended till further review.

While advising people to restrict themselves to their localities, Aliyu explained that “for inter state travels, the restriction is only exempted for those supplying essential goods and commodities such as  agricultural products, petroleum products, corrier services and relief items.

“For intral-state state travels, there are certain aspects that we must emphasise across the borders, whether you are transport businesses, you are companies, you must make sure that you provide sanitizers to your customers.

He maintained that everyone is now expected to use face mask and that temperature checks would be introduced to ensure that respiratory hygiene is followed, while there should not be a gathering of more than twenty persons.

“For the aspect of agriculture and rural development, companies invovled in food production and processing, and construction sites would be allowed but people must make sure they observe social distancing.

The federal government has also mandated those offices, premises and businesses that will be gradually re-opening to take some key preparatory steps, including fumigation and decontamination and as well make arrangements for physical distancing as they resume operations.

Other new rules, according to Boss Mustapha, Secretary to the Government of the Federation and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 include provision of hand sanitizers and hand washing facilities; as well as ensure mandatory use of face masks.

The introduced guidelines come ahead of the gradual relaxation of lockdown measures in Lagos, Ogun and the Federal capital Territory FCT, and two weeks lockdown in Kano state to contain coronavirus spread, and according to the SGF, the gradual reopening of the economy will span a total of 6 weeks broken into 3 tranches of 2 weeks each”

Speaking during the daily briefing, Mustapha said such offices and businesses must provide thermometers for temperature checks; make adequate provisions for persons living with disabilities while making all these arrangements; put measures in place to increase communication with staff on COVID-19 and measures put in place; and other measure that may be peculiar for the organisations and/or sector.

The SGF also re-emphasised that “mass gathering of more than 20 people outside of a workplace is strictly prohibited; controlled access to neighborhood markets and locations of economic activities will be enforced; mandatory temperature checks will be conducted in public places; social distancing of 2 metres to be maintained between people in workplaces and other public places.

Meanwhile, all passenger flights remain under ban while government continues to enforce mandatory supervised isolation of persons arriving from outside the country for at least 14 days.

Mustapha reiterated that the overnight curfew would be applicable nationwide from 8.00pm to 06.00am
 daily, effective Monday, 4th of May, 2020, adding, ” Inter-State travels are banned except for the movement of goods, agro-products, petroleum products, essential services as directed by President Buhari.

According to him, “This phased strategy is designed to reduce the pains of socio-economic disruptions while strengthening our public health response, which would ultimately reduce the recovery of our economy and provide succour to the poor and vulnerable”

He therefore, urged Sub-National levels of Government, to provide leadership in engaging relevant associations responsible for various sectors, including market associations and transport unions for orderly and effective implementation.

The SGF also called security agencies to strictly enforce these new measures that have been put in place.

Reiterating the need for increase in local research, Mustapha said local scientists must deepen its capacity and be encouraged considering the huge role all relevant research institutes need to play at this time.

“The Federal Ministry of Health is coordinating the process in conjunction with the National Institute for Medical Research and the Nigerian Institute for Pharmaceutical Research and Development.

“We have received information on domestic and international claims about emerging inventions on COVID-19. These are most welcome but scientific validation process and protocols will have to be followed. We are open to all options for the good of humanity.

At the briefing, Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) said there was no end in sight yet to the Covid-19 pandemic in the country, as he saluted all health workers and every Nigerians playing a role in response to the pandemic for their hardwork and sacrifices they are making.

The DG regretted that even some member of his team have contracted the virus. He however urged them and indeed all Nigerians to persevere with the assurance that government is working to get the country back on track again.

“Many people are away from their families for six-weeks to two months, they work very hard with no end in sight at the moment, yet they have no option every morning they have to wake up and continue pushing.

“A number of people in my own team that have sadly become infected themselves as part of the response in the line of duty.

” I spoke to them and they ended up encouraging me and the PTF to keep pushing for the future of the country.

“So, today I want to thank all of them, whether you are working clinically, a public health, surveillance officer, a driver, or any part you play in this response not to give up, we need all if you to keep pushing.

“So wherever you are in Nigeria responding to this outbreak, I ask you to persevere, we will see the light at the end of the tunnel.

The Minister of Health, Osagie Ehanire requested Members of the National Assembly and State Houses of Assemblies to get involved in the Covid-19 disease surveillance and notification efforts in their constituencies and to actively support the drive to rapidly increase bed spaces for Isolation and treatment in their States.

Ehanire also called on all  States and Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to give first line attention to the provision of Isolation Centres and more bed spaces so as not to be taken by surprise, especially as the lockdown is being relaxed from Monday.

He explained that the increasing figure of confirmed cases underscores the ongoing community transmission, which is a major challenge that necessitated more calls on all citizens not to take this Covid-19 lightly.

The Minister advised Nigerians to take ownership of the initiatives for non-pharmaceutical interventions with strict adherence to public health advisories such as to social distance, practise hand and respiratory hygiene, avoid crowded places and wear mask or a face covering when going, failure which will throw up negative effects.

He strongly urged those who test positive for Covid-19 to cooperate with the directives of authorities, on Isolation, so as not to constitute a risk and a cause for public concern.

The Minister also said the Federal Ministry of Health has completed plans to start training and capacity building of much needed Intensive Care workforce for various parts of the country.









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