The Plateau governnment has extended the total lockdown in the state to midnight April 23, to meet the medically stipulated quarantine period of 14 days.
Governor Simon Lalong announced the extension in a state broadcast on Wednesday in Jos.
The state government had earlier directed a total lock down from midnight of April 9 to April 15 to embark on fumigation to decontaminate the state.
He, however, announced a four days relaxation the total lockdown to restriction of movement for residents to restock.
“Beginning from 11pm Wednesday, April 15 to midnight April 19, the total lockdown will be relaxed to enable people go out to restock their homes.
“By implication, the earlier restriction prior to the total lockdown remains,” Lalong said.
He said that all entry and exit border to Plateau are totally locked, warning that violators would be arrested, prosecuted and quarantined for 14 days until they are confirmed free of the disease.
He, however, said that farmers, particularly in the rural areas are exempted from the restrictions, as they are required to cultivate their farms since the rains have started.
The governor said that the farmers should however, observe all guidelines for social distancing and hygiene.
He said that essential workers including producers of bread, water and beverages are also exempted from the restrictions.
He said that all precautionary measures of personal and respiratory hygiene, guidelines for worship , social gathering and closure of markets except those selling food stuff must be adhered to during the four days grace period before the total lockdown resumes.
The governor also said that the Ten mobile Courts established to try violators of the previous one week lockdown would continue operation.
“242 violators were tried and convicted and were made to pay fine, while 195 that could not pay fine were subjected to community service,”he said.
Lalong added the state government have constituted a committee headed by the Deputy Governor, Prof. Sonni Tyoden to start immediate distribution of palliatives to the indigents and the most vulnerable in the state.
” While we await the Federal Government’s contributions to complement our efforts,” the governor said.
He explained that the palliatives would not be extended to beneficiaries of the National Social Investment Programme and salary earners, to enable wider reach to the needy.
On COVID-19 update, Lalong said the state had investigated 99 cases and currently isolated 23 persons who are under observation.
”This is because they came in from other States with confirmed cases of the disease. Of the 23 persons isolated, none has so far shown any symptoms,”he said.
The governor said that the state government had engaged an indigenous inventor, Jerry Mallo, to fabricate ventilators , which are critical in the treatment of COVID-19.
According to him, the products are being tested by health experts.
He expressed concern on the reported cases of assault by some enforcement officials while warning that such act would not be tolerated.
He, however, said that an independent intelligence monitoring team has been set up to address cases of violation of human rights by some security personnel.
Lalong thanked security agencies, religious, community and political Leaders among others for their cooperation toward steming the spread of COVID-19,
Lalong said the Bio-Safety Level 3 Laboratory at the National Veterinary Research Institute (NVRI) Vom, has been equipped and certified by the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) to begin test for COVID-19
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