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Coronavirus: Lowdown extended by two weeks in Kaduna

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The Kaduna State government has extended the Lockdown Orders by two weeks.

This followed the expiration of the 60 days lockdown in the State.

From the month of June, 2020, citizens of the State will start enjoying three free days- Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday to enable people go out for shopping.

In an address by the State’s deputy governor, Dr Hadiza Balarebe to the citizens of the state, she said, “After 60 days, the state government has reviewed the Quarantine Orders. The Governor, Malam Nasir El-Rufai, has approved the recommendation to extend the partial lockdown regulations for two weeks, with adjustments to permit the reopening of certain sectors. These measures are intended to preserve the state’s ability to protect citizens, empower citizens to lead the fight against Covid-19 and make necessary adjustments to the partial lockdown to permit the safe resumption of the pursuit of livelihoods in more sectors.

“When the decision was taken on Saturday, 25th April 2020 to extend the initial lockdown by 30 days, the government also charged a committee of senior officials to begin planning a post-lockdown scenario for the state. That committee has since submitted its report on how to safely reopen Kaduna State, and it identified availability of realistic health data as one crucial factor for making any decision. This is an important matter given the Covid-19 infection in our state and in neighbouring states. Many of the cases recorded in Kaduna State have either been from persons with a history of interstate travel or their contacts.”

She stated that from Monday, 1st June 2020, the revised regulations would come into effect, adding, “They give citizens a three-day window every week to shop for food and other essentials. Until otherwise stated, the lockdown-free days are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Temporary neighbourhood markets will continue to operate from 10 am to 4 pm on these three days, but citizens can move from 6 am to 6 pm on these lockdown-free days. Informal markets are not allowed and those flouting regulations by turning streets into markets are advised to stop.”

She said the adjusted orders also expanded the ability of citizens to resume the pursuit of livelihoods, in permitted sectors subject to compliance with health and safety protocols, including physical distancing.

Private sector firms that meet these requirements, she explained would also operate on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, adding that the window also allows vulcanisers, welders, mechanics and providers of similar services to operate on the same days.

The prohibition of interstate and intercity travel, she said, remains, adding that government officials and mobile courts would enforce the ban to prevent people from spreading the virus through non-essential movement, while the nighttime curfew that has been enforced across the state still remained from 6 pm to 6 am.

She said Schools, places of worship and markets would remain closed under the adjusted orders, stressing that the relevant government officials and agencies will be engaging with religious leaders, transport unions, traditional institutions, market unions, school proprietors and other stakeholders as may be identified from time to time, to discuss the conditions and circumstances for a safe reopening of those sectors.

She further explained that the public sector would use the two-week extension to prepare for limited resumption, while Heads of Ministries, Department and Agencies will ensure that government offices are reconfigured for physical distancing and that handwashing facilities are available.

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