The Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) has announced that the nationwide curfew from midnight to 4 a.m and limitations on gatherings along with other restrictions imposed in 2019 to curb the spread of coronavirus have been eased.
It, however, warned political parties to ensure that their events involving large gatherings adhere to COVID-19 guidelines issued by the Independent Electoral Commission (INEC).
These were contained in new policy announced yesterday by the PSC on COVID-19 on the implementation guidelines for easing COVID-19 restrictions across different national activities.
The policy, signed by the committee’s chairman and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr. Boss Mustapha, said the decision followed reduced risk of importation of new variants.
According to the committee, no limitation on air travels – both domestic and international flights. But, both international and domestic travelers must abide by existing protocols, including the use of face mask while onboard and taking personal precaution measures.
It stated that all arriving international passengers must register with the Nigeria International Travel Portal (https://nitp.ncdc.gov.ng) and abide by the travel guidelines.
The new instruction prescribed that organizers of political events must ensure use of face masks (mandatory for indoor meetings, while recommended for outdoor); mandatory temperature checks and use of sanitizers at events; political parties to be responsible for compliance to safety measures; and voting procedures must comply with the stipulated COVID-19 safety protocol by INEC.
He said the decision was also due to availability of vaccines and increasing number of people vaccinated in Nigeria and globally.
Mustapha said the social restriction recommendations were revised in line with the three established thematic areas – movement, industry and labour, as well as community activities.
The SGF stated that the safety protocols provide a baseline from which state governments could further build on to strengthen their responses based on their local circumstances.
“States should continue to consider them as the minimum guidelines required to ensure acceptable level of epidemic control nationwide,” he stated.
He said there were no more formal restrictions on movement within the country as the nationwide curfew imposed from midnight to 4 a.m. had been lifted.
“Use of face mask to be mandatory for indoor activities but at individual’s discretion during outdoor activities. Those aged 60 and above or with co-morbidities such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease are advised to uphold the use of universal precaution which includes the use of face mask, avoid crowd and frequent use of hand sanitizers,” he added.