Kwara State government, on Thursday, imposed a total lockdown effective from Friday, to curtail the coronavirus, COVID-19, pandemic.
Deputy Governor Kayode Alabi made the announcement during a briefing, adding that it was part of efforts to curb the spread of COVID-19.
The development comes two days after the lockdown imposed on Offa local government.
Kwara has two of the total 276 confirmed COVID-19 cases in Nigeria.
According to Alabi, who doubles as the chairman of the state’s COVID-19 committee, the total lockdown was necessary to flatten the curve of transmission.
The restriction is expected to last for an initial period of 14 days.
The deputy governor, however, said commercial vehicles carrying food are exempted from the restriction.
He added that markets, where foods and medications are sold, will open thrice a week between 10 am and 2 pm.“The government hereby bans all vehicular movements, including private and commercial vehicles, from 6p.m. tomorrow, Friday 10 April, 2020,” Alabi said.
“The only exceptions are commercial trucks carrying goods and services who would operate with absolute respect for social distancing and other COVID-19 safety protocols. All kinds of shops, bars, pubs, and markets are hereby shut until further notice. Markets where foods and medications are sold will open on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, between 10 a.m. and 2p.m.
“Contractors working on government projects are allowed to proceed to work with no more than 20 workers on site at one time.”
Alabi further said that previous restrictions remain and would be enforced.
He expressed strong disapproval of the alleged stigmatisation of COVID-19 patients or other persons and communities on account of their contacts with any patient.
Alabi appealed to residents of the state not to panic, while assuring them that the state government was on top of the situation to keep them safe.
He urged them to practice social distancing and abide by all the stipulated hygiene guidelines.