By Chioma Onuegbu – Uyo
Akwa Ibom state government has reiterated that the restriction of movement put in place because of the ravaging COVID-19 infectious disease was still in operations, adding that it would, however, allow movement for only Good Friday and Easter Sunday.
The Commissioner of Information, Mr. Charles Udoh who disclosed this in a statement made available to newsmen on Friday, explained that the COVID-19 lockdown recommences at 1pm on both days but remains in full operations on all subsequent days until further notice.
Udoh advised that all churches and religious gatherings must provide hand sanitizers at the entry points and face masks, worn for the duration of such gathering, non-contact infra-red thermometers used at the entrances, adding that sitting arrangement must be social distancing compliant.
He stressed that it became necessary that the lockdown was still in operations following latest review of the current global pandemic situation and the need to continue to protect the citizens and residents.
Udoh stated, “Following the latest review of the current global COVID-19 situation and taking into account the need for continued protection of all citizens and residents in the state against the threat of the raging pandemic, it has become necessary to reiterate that the Quarantine and Restriction of Movement Regulations 2020 is still in operations.
“However, churches and religious gatherings are allowed on Friday, April 10 and Sunday April 12, 2020 but must comply strictly to the following guidelines.
“All religious gatherings must disperse early enough to ensure that members of the congregation return home on or before 1pm. All such congregations must not have more than 20 persons, including the Pastors/ Priest and Choir, per church; irrespective of the size of the church.
“The Quarantine and Restriction of Movement Regulations 2020 earlier signed into operations and announced by the Governor of Akwa Ibom State, Mr. Udom Emmanuel, recommences at 1pm on both days but remains in full operations on all subsequent days until further notice
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“Therefore, citizens and residents are enjoined to adhere strictly to these guidelines as Law enforcement agencies are mandated to ensure full compliance.
“The Akwa Ibom State Government shall continue do all within its powers and the ambit of existing laws and regulations to protect lives, properties and economic endeavors within its territory.
“The COVID-19 pandemic is devoid political, ethnic, religious and indeed all other related nuances. It calls for unity and oness of purpose to minimize the surge in our state”