By Rita Iliya
Minna – Gov. Abubakar Bello of Niger says government has noticed with dismay that people no longer follow established safety protocols against COVID-19, especially wearing of face mask in public places, which he says is unacceptable.
He made the observation during a news briefing after meeting with the state’s Task Force Committee on COVID-19 in Minna.
According to him, there shall be reinforced strict adherence to safety protocols of wearing face mask, hand-washing, use of sanitisers and maintenance of physical distancing.
He said “all forms of mass gathering occasioned by the ease of lockdown are hereby proscribed, and there shall be reinvigorated curfew from 10 p.m. till 4 a.m.”
He directed the state’s ministries of Information, Health and relevant MDAs to embark on sensitisation on the need to observe the protocols to curtail spread of the virus.
He said there should be caution, especially in markets, motor parks, places of worship and other public places.
He directed that all access to government house and other government offices should be restricted except for those on essential services.
The governor directed security agencies to strictly enforce compliance, adding that violators of the directives would be prosecuted by mobile courts.
He disclosed that the state recorded 166 cases of COVID-19, discharged 113, with nine deaths.
He said the 11 affected local government areas include; Bida, Borgu, Bosso, Chanchaga, Kontagora, Mariga.