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President Muhammadu Buhari says the restriction of movement in several states across the country will remain as long as experts find it necessary.
Buhari had ordered a 14-day lockdown in Lagos, Ogun and the federal capital territory to contain the spread of coronavirus.
In a statement on Saturday, Garba Shehu, presidential spokesman, quoted Buhari as saying the lockdown is a major attempt to tackle the spread of COVID-19.
He acknowledged the efforts of Nigerians as well as the sacrifices made during the stay at home period.
Buhari assured Nigerians that the measure remains one of the safest ways to prevent the disease from escalating.
The president said no vaccine has been found to cure to the virus, adding that the defeat of coronavirus in the country lies in the hands of Nigerians.
“We realize that today, there will be sons and daughters unable to visit their parents, and elders that are isolated from young ones. And there will be those who live day-to-day, eating as they earn, who face real and present suffering,” he said.
“No elected government could ask more of the citizens of the country that elected them than today we ask of you. But we must ask you – once more – to observe restrictions on movement where they are in place, and follow the instructions of our scientists and medical advisers: stay home, wash your hands, save lives.
“The freedoms we ask you to willingly forsake today will only last as long as our scientific advisers declare they are necessary. But they are essential – world over – to halt and defeat the spread of this virus.”
He also spoke about palliatives, asking people to get updates on how to be beneficiaries from the media.
“For those who suffer most egregiously, the Government has announced multiple measures to assist: 70,000 tonnes of grain is being released from the National Strategic Grain Reserves for distribution to those in most need; distribution of small cash payments are also being made, and will continue to be made by the federal government in the states and local government areas,” he said.
Nigeria has continued to record an increase in number of confirmed coronavirus cases.
As of Friday evening, the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) announced the confirmation of 17 new cases, bringing the total figure to 305.
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