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Tension Mounts As Nigerian Government Set To Impose Fresh Lockdown

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The Federal Government on Thursday said it will have no option other than to impose a fresh lockdown on the country if the rising cases of Covid infections recorded lately continue.

The National Coordinator of the Presidential Task Force on Covid-19, Sani Aliyu, stated this during a briefing in Abuja.

The Nation had earlier reported that the Minister of Information and Culture, Lai Mohammed, on Monday, said the Federal Government has no plan to impose a fresh lockdown as the country battles the second wave of the pandemic.

But speaking on Thursday, the PTF Coordinator said the rising Covid infections recorded of recent in the country were concerning and might require a fresh lockdown.

Aliyu said, “If these numbers continue to go up and we start having significant deaths, we will have no option. If we do not want to lock down, now is the time to make sure that we follow the non-pharmaceutical interventions.”

Also, the PTF Chairman and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Boss Mustapha, who spoke earlier, said, “The Presidential Task Force is very concerned about the increasing daily numbers that we are recording.

“On 6th of January 2021, we recorded 1,664 infections. This is yet another all-time high in Nigerian and we must all take full responsibility through compliance and vigilance.”

The Federal Government had in March 2020 locked down the Federal Capital Territory as well as Lagos and Ogun States for over five weeks as part of measures to curb the spread of COVID-19 during the first wave of the pandemic. The lockdown had a tremendous effect on economic activities with the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry putting the loss at about N3bn in the period under review.

Many jobs were also lost as airlines, hotels, banks, amongst others cut their workforce due to the crushing effect of the lockdown.

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