COVID-19: el-Rufai mulls another lockdown in Kaduna

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Governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir el-Rufai is mulling another lockdown in the state over the resurgence of the coronavirus pandemic.

el-Rufai said that the State is experiencing a rising rate of Covid-19 infections, warning that government may impose another lockdown among other options it is considering to manage the situation.

El-Rufai called on citizens to adopt and practice the prevention protocols such as wearing facemasks and avoiding crowded places and large gatherings, to enable the state to contain the situation without imposing another lockdown.

The governor’s Special Adviser on Media and Communication, Mr. Muyiwa Adekeye issued a statement on Thursday, saying that El-Rufai conveyed his concern at the 2021 budget signing ceremony held at the Government House.

Speaking at the event, the governor expressed concern that infection rates are now hovering between 20% and 35%.

The statement quoted the governor as saying that ‘’by August and September, we were down to 1%, 2%, 3% infection rates from samples we tested. Now, we are hovering between 20% and 35%.’

“The rate of infections is surging and we have now decided that every employee of Kaduna State Government must be tested and no person will be allowed to enter any government office, any hospital, any school, any public facility without a mask and maintaining social distancing,’’ he warned.

As part of the measures for managing the situation, the governor said the state will ‘’bring back mobile courts to enforce the wearing of masks because if we don’t do that, these infections will continue to rise and will affect the lives and livelihoods of our people.’’

El-Rufai explained that compliance with Covid-19 prevention protocols represents the most effective and least costly way to contain the disease.

According to the governor, the state prefers to avoid a lockdown but may have no option if the adherence to prevention controls does not improve.

“If people refuse to wear masks and observe social distancing, we will consider locking down the state once again. Nobody wants that. We know the impact of that on lives and livelihoods, but we must save lives first,’’ he said.

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