Boss Mustapha, secretary to the government of the federation (SGF), has expressed his doubt over the certainty of calling off the coronavirus lockdown in Lagos, Ogun and Abuja after 14 days.
President Muhammadu Buhari had, In an effort to curtail the spread of COVID-19, on March 29 ordered a 14-day lockdown.
Speaking in Lagos on Tuesday, Mustapha, chairman of the presidential task force on COVID-19, said his team would make a recommendation to the president who would further issue directive on the next line of action to be taken regarding the lockdown.
“Before the end of the week, we would do an evaluation to see how the objectives we have set are being met. At the end of that exercise, we would have the responsibility of reporting to Mr President, because Mr President in his declaration did state that it was on the advice of the minister of health and the health experts that informed his decision to sign the quarantine declaration 2020,” he said.
“At the end of our evaluation, certain sets of recommendation and advice would go to Mr President. And at that point, he and he alone takes the decision as to when the lockdown will either be extended or it would stop at the expiration of the 14 days.
“Because in his address to the nation, he did say 14 days in the first instance. So, it is open, it is based on what has happened within these 14 days. And objectives that have been set, have they been met? Have we achieved success in the direction we want to go? If that has been achieved, he would look at all the information available to him as the president of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and I can assure you he would take a decision that it’s in the best interest of the people of Nigeria.”
Mustapha said it is not the desire of the government to punish citizens by restricting their movement, but “the difficult decision was taken to save lives by preventing spread”.
He said reports have been received on the general level of satisfactory compliance in Lagos and there were also reports on violations.
“In this case, I commend the instant action taken by the Lagos state government by prosecuting and convicting notable violators, which shows that nobody should be above the law,” he said.