By Bolaji Ogundele, Abuja
Nigerians have been told to brace for possible second wave of Coronavirus (COVID-19) infections.
The red alert was issued on Monday in Abuja by the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19 Control), which plans to unfold the next steps in the national response efforts before this week.
PTF Chairman and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) Boss Mustapha said Nigerians should continue to take responsibility as no nation has immunity against a resurgence of the virus.
He said strict adherence to COVID-19 guidelines and safety protocols remained the only protection against infection.
Mustapha said: “The PTF is glad that the economy is opening up the more, but warns that as we continue to study developments in Europe and other parts of the world, no nation can be said to be immune to a possible second wave if the guidelines and protocols are not adhered to strictly. Nigerians need to anticipate this and prepare. Our hope and prayers are that it shall never happen.
“For our proper information and guidance, the picture from around the world can be summarised as follows. Over the last few days, global cases crossed the 37 million mark. In the UK, cases have been on the increase, and the fifth highest number of daily cases was recorded on Sunday 11th (12, 872).
Similarly, Brazil’s case load has also continued to increase with the registration of a daily case load of over 65,000 on the 11th of October.”
According to the PTF chair, the next steps in the national response efforts would be made public during the week, after the panel’s report and recommendations have been presented to President Muhammadu Buhari.
He said: “Before this week runs out, the PTF shall unveil to Nigerians the next steps regarding the remaining phase of the eased lockdown.
“As you were informed last week, findings and recommendations have been compiled and would be presented to Mr. President in the 8th Interim Report, shortly.”
He went further to say the debate about the safe reopening of schools lies with the states as federating units and have the responsibility for determining the dates and modalities for the safe reopening while the Federal Government provides the guidelines.
“The debate about the safe reopening of schools has dominated the space of conversation by concerned citizens and parents. We wish to reiterate that federating units have the responsibility for determining the dates and modalities for the safe reopening while the Federal Government provides the guidelines.”
He also said that the PTF and relevant Ministries Department and Agencies (MDAs) have made appreciable progress in the discussions with the European Union (EU) over flight restrictions and entry of Nigerian nationals and holders of long-term Schengen visas into the territory, expressing hope that there would be positive response soon.
Read the original article on The Nation