COVID-19: FG extends ban on flights

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The Federal Government has extended the ban on flights into Nigerian for four weeks as part of measures to curtail the spread of COVID-19.

The Nigerian government had on March 18 banned flights from 13 countries including the United States of America and the United Kingdom.

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF) and Chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha who announced the extension of the ban during the days of the Task Force said the extension of the ban became necessary in the efforts to fight the pandemic.

He said “Tomorrow (Thursday) marks the last day for the enforcement of the closure of Nigeria’s airspace to flights. We have assessed the situation in the aviation industry and have come to the conclusion that given the facts available to us and based on the advice of experts, the ban on all flights will be extended for an additional four weeks.“

On the compliance of Nigerians with the easing of the lockdown in Lagos, Ogun and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja Mustapha expressed disappointment with the attitude of Nigerians and warned of danger ahead.

“The overall assessment of compliance with the measures and outcomes of modelling we have developed, point in the direction of danger ahead. We, therefore, need personal discipline, increased awareness and enforcement.

“The PTF calls on the community, religious, and traditional leaders to take up this challenge. Similarly, we call on, trade associations, professional bodies and organizations to complement the efforts of the government. The PTF appreciates your current efforts but it has become very obvious that more needs to be done, together.

“Early assessment of the ease of lockdown phase indicates that Nigerians are yet to come to terms with the deadliness and the virulent nature of the COVID-19 and this gives us concerns on the high possibility of increased seeding of the virus to hitherto un-affected persons and populations.”

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