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COVID-19: Why we are not imposing 24hrs curfew now ― Sanwo-Olu

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Why no curfew in Lagos State ― Sanwo-Olu
Lagos State Governor, Mr Babajide Sanwo-Olu, flanked by the Deputy Governor, Dr Obafemi Hamzat (left) and Head of Service, Mr Hakeem Muri-Okunola (right) during a media briefing to update on the Coronavirus pandemic, at Lagos House, Marina, on Sunday, March 22, 2020.

The Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu dropped the idea of imposing a curfew in the state meant to allow the fumigation exercise of public space.

Relying on experts advice, the Governor said the disinfectant is non-toxic, noting that the exercise has commenced.

He said: “I am pleased to note that we have taken possession of over 200 disinfecting machines, and starting today, we will be disinfecting all major highways, bus stops, markets, parks and other public areas.

The Governor also said during a live press conference that if there is a need for curfew, the government will not hesitate to impose it.

For now, everything remains the way they are.

Meanwhile, amidst fears by health watchers and close observers that Nigeria may be going the way of Italy and Spain that have suffered high casualties from coronavirus disease, COVID-19 that is ravaging the global community, the Lagos State Government raised an alarm yesterday that 39,000 cases of the disease may be recorded in the state going by the number of cases already imported into the country.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Lagos may declare total lockdown soon if …— Sanwo-Olu 

Lagos State Commissioner for Health, Prof Akin Abayomi, who disclosed this at a press conference in Lagos said that the State Government was tracing 2,649 persons out of which 2,395 persons have been reached. He also said not less than 352 contacts have exited the 14 days of the isolation period.

Abayomi who was reviewing how the State has fared so far in terms of numbers said: “Our mathematical modelling shows that the worst-case scenario is that we may see up to 39,000 cases in Lagos.”

He added that if everyone practices good social distancing, the figure could be limited to 13,000.

“If we add social distancing to active contact tracing, then we will be able to bend the curve further,” he said, noting that the figures were small, compared to outbreaks around the world.

“The figures may seem alarming at this point, but this is just to emphasise to the Lagos community to follow instructions of the incident commander to make sure that we practice social distancing.

“Looking at the same time frame from the introduction of the index case, you can see that Lagos State is not seen anywhere near what Spain, Italy and Iran are showing.

Sanwo-Olu had on Friday said the state is heading towards a lockdown but a number of factors are being considered before some decisions are made.

He said a dusk to dawn curfew will begin in the state from Sunday, adding that the domestic airport will be shut for a period of two weeks.

The governor said the state has acquired over 200 disinfecting machines to commence fumigation of public areas.

“We are moving in the direction of a total lockdown but there are numbers or indices that we need to see before we carry it out, which we have yet to see. We need to see a huge spike in the numbers of confirmed cases, so, we are looking at that,” he said.

“I am hereby directing a statewide curfew from 8pm to 6am, starting from Sunday until further notice. This is to enable us to carry out comprehensive disinfection of the Lagos Metropolis.

“I am pleased to note that we have taken possession of over 200 disinfecting machines, and starting today, we will be disinfecting all major highways, bus stops, markets, parks, and other public areas.

“With effect from Sunday, we will be closing the domestic airport in Lagos, the General Aviation Terminal and the MM2. All movements in and out of Lagos through the two domestic terminals will, therefore, be suspended from Sunday for two weeks in the first instance. The only exceptions will be flights carrying essential supplies and those on emergency operations.”

The state government earlier announced the closure of schools and a ban on large gatherings.

Seventy per cent of workers in the state’s civil service were also directed to stay at home for a period of two weeks.

Vanguard Nigeria News

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