Reports indicate that President Muhammadu Buhari may initiate further easing of the COVID-19 lockdown imposed on the country to contain the spread of the pandemic; following the recommendations from the Presidential Task Force on Sunday, May 31.
The country may now be able to move to the second stage of ease of COVID-19 lockdown; after it was postponed two weeks ago.
This recommendation was presented by the chairman of the task force as well as Secretary of the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha.
Speaking after the meeting at the Presidential Villa, Abuja; Mustapha hinted that the economy will be open further if President Buhari gives approval to the recommendations the task force has made.
He replied: “Even in the first phase and the COVID-19 extension that came with it; a substantial part of the economy was opened up by way of allowing agricultural production.
“People that produce fertiliser and the oil and gas industry was never closed for one day. Haulage of oil, refining, and prospecting never stopped for one day and some aspects of the financial sector was opened.”
“After we receive Mr President’s approval tonight or tomorrow morning; we will now know which segments of the economy he has allowed for opening.”
He also hinted that Kogi and Cross River states; which have claimed that there is no Covid-19 in their territories, will be pressed to understand the imperative of tagging along with the national response.
The SGF said: “It is important that they realise that no man is an island; when you deal with public health matters; that whatever happens in a particular locality has the consequences of skidding off to other constituencies.
“That is the message that we continue to drive in our pursuit of getting everybody to be on board. And I can assure you that there is no island as far as COVID-19 is concerned in this country.
“We must integrate the different responses from all the communities in the states and have everybody to be on the same page.
“We will continue to pursue that and we will also ensure that it happens. I can assure you that.”