Except for the transportation of food items, Akwa Ibom State government has announced the closure of its borders with other states as one of its preventive measures against the spread of the novel coronavirus.
There is no suspected or confirmed case of the virus in the state.
The state government has also directed its workers to stay at home for a week from March 30.
The new directive is contained in an update issued on Thursday morning by the Secretary to the State Government, Emmanuel Ekuwem.
The stay-at-home order for the government workers would be strongly enforced, Mr Ekuwem said in the statement.
The statement said the state-owned airline, Ibom Air, would suspend all its flight operations from Sunday, March 29.
Mr Ekuwem, who said markets in the state would remain open for sales of foodstuffs and essential commodities, urged churches in the state to fast and pray for God’s mercy on Sunday, March 29.
“Residents and citizens are strongly advised to apply all the preventive measures earlier announced.
“While the one-week stay-at-home order subsists, Akwa Ibom State Government will continue to monitor and provide regular updates on any development in the COVID-19 situation in our state.
“Although there is no confirmed COVID-19 case in Akwa Ibom State, we abide by the ancient adage that ‘prevention is better than cure’.
“The Governor, also enjoins all residents and citizens; including professional bodies, to desist from creating unnecessary panic within the state by propagating unverified news, whipping up selfish and myopic sentiments and fanning the embers of discord for pecuniary / or political gains,” the statement said.
So far, Nigeria has a total of 51 confirmed cases and one death.
Lagos State has the highest number of confirmed cases in the country with 32 cases, followed by Abuja with 10 cases, Ogun State three, and Ekiti, Oyo Edo, Bauchi Osun and Rivers have one case each.
Most of the cases reported are travellers who have just returned to the country. Other cases are people who have come in contact with infected people.
Some senior government officials like Bauchi State Governor, Bala Mohammed, and the Chief of Staff to the President, Abba Kyari have tested positive while others have self-isolated.
Meanwhile, most state governments have directed that some of its workers stay at home and not report to work.