The Plateau State Government has said it does not intend to impose a lockdown in response to the second wave of COVID-19, but will ensure strict compliance to all protocols.
This was disclosed at a stakeholders’ meeting convened by the governor, Simon Lalong, with local government chairpersons, traditional rulers, religious leaders, community leaders and health experts to discuss how best to address the situation in line with the advisory of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19.
The meeting was presided by the Secretary to the Government of Plateau State, Danladi Atu, who doubles as the coordinator of the state task force on COVID-19.
During the meeting, Mr Atu said the governor had directed that strong measures be taken to ensure that people are sensitised to observe all the COVID-19 protocols in order to curb the spread of the disease.
Meanwhile, after deliberations, the meeting adopted some measures including ban on all public gatherings and cultural festivals.
It also added that places of worship should cut down attendance to 50 per cent of their capacity.
“The use of facemasks should be enforced in all public places while social distancing, hand washing and other protocols are adhered to.
“COVID-19 testing should be enhanced in all local government areas while all sample collection centres be publicised to encourage voluntary testing.”
Similar restrictions have been imposed in other states over the recent resurgence in infections which is believed to be more dangerous if citizens keep violating safety protocols.
Last week alone, 5,176 infections were reported in the country– the highest weekly figure so far.
Nigeria’s total coronavirus cases is fast approaching 80,000.
On security, Mr Atu said security reports available to the government indicate that some criminal elements are planning attacks on some communities in the state during the yuletide season.
He said the governor mandated the meeting to foster a more community-driven response to intelligence and surveillance so as to assist security agencies with useful information to enable them respond to any threat of attack by criminals.
Mr Atu said the state government was working with the security agencies to be more proactive rather than reactive. He also said the state had strengthened ‘Operation Rainbow’ to ensure that it compliments the security effort.
The meeting also resolved that there should be reinforcement, surveillance and intelligence gathering in all communities.
“All security threats should be reported immediately using the appropriate channels. Public transporters particularly commercial tricycle operators should be registered. Vigilante groups and community watch groups should be motivated
“Motorcycles and tricycles are banned from operating on Friday 25th, Saturday 26th December 2020 and Friday1st January 2021 across the 17 Local Governments. All boundary routes into the State and within the Local Government areas should be monitored and check-points mounted to monitor movements,” the statement read.
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