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FG Says 20,000 passengers violated COVID-19 travel protocols

As Nigeria intensifies battles against the second wave of the global Coronavirus pandemic, the Federal government on Tuesday said it has identified 20,000 inbound passengers who have violated its COVID-19 travels protocols, adding that this represents threats to public health.

The Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on the Coronavirus containment, Boss Mustapha, at the national briefing in Abuja, on Tuesday, said the PTF will intensify actions against the violators

Mustapha who described the threats as unacceptable, said it represents a drawback to the various national response developed so far.

Mustapha while noting that the PTF has commenced the sanctions on passengers who defaulted on day-7 post arrival tests, said their passport numbers have been published and travel restriction imposed for a period of six months effective 1st January, 2021.

“Let me categorically state that the PTF has generated over 20,000 inbound passengers that have also defaulted. The publication will continue weekly till it is exhausted.

“Nigerians should be aware that every defaulter is a threat to public health which is unacceptable to us and represent a draw back to the National Response.

The PTF boss advised Nigerians “ to advise our relations, friends, associates to comply with laid down rules. The DG (NCDC) and the National Coordinator will update you on this”

This is as federal government however regretted the “low testing in a number of states”, despite the strong support given the states.
“Federal Government has sufficiently supported the States to enable them support surveillance and IPC”

He revealed that to overcome some of these challenges, the PTF will intensify the risk communication and community engagement to create awareness.

Mustapha also lamented the “share level of doubts about the ravaging virus” which he described as “alarming” and called on every one to become advocates in support of the National Response.

Read also: Covid-19: Nigeria to receive 100,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine before end of January

He also revealed that the NYSC engagements conducted by the PTF, showed that out of the 35,419 in the Batch B, 731 tested positive compared to 108 recorded during the Batch A, with every state producing at least one positive case.

“It is on record that cases were recorded from Corps Members from every State of the Federation.

He disclosed that President Muhammadu Buhari has given approval for the establishment of one oxygen center in each state of the country, even as approval has been given also for the rehabilitation of five oxygen plants across various tertiary health institutions in Abuja.

“The President has also approved that at least one oxygen plant should be established in each state of the federation immediately. The National Coordinator will elaborate on this during this briefing.

“In the last two weeks, a lot has been discussed on case management and in particular, the availability of oxygen to save lives. We are pleased to inform you that the private sector – CACOVID has commenced supporting our response with 100 oxygen cylinders per day till the end of March, 2021, for distribution to critical care centres in Abuja.