President Muhammadu Buhari has ordered a total lockdown of Kano for two weeks as he approved the easing of the stay-at-home orders in force in Abuja, Lagos and Ogun as from May 4th.
This was contained in an a nationwide broadcast on Monday night by the president. There had been increasing cases of strange deaths in Kano recently. It is reported that at least 640 people had died within one week. It is suspected that the deaths are COVID-19 related.
Although he approved of easing of the lockdown in Lagos, Abuja and Ogun, Mr. Buhari imposed a dusk to dawn curfew in those places.
He also said the ban on social and religious remains in force.
Mr. Buhari said he consulted widely before taking the decisions.
The president commended Nigerians for the level of endurance shown throughout the four weeks that the lockdown has lasted, urging them to adhere to the guidelines of the presidential task force on COVID-19 and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
He said, “I will start by commending you all for the resilience and patriotism that you have shown in our collective fight against the biggest health challenge of our generation.”
“As at yesterday, 26th April 2020, some 3 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 have been recorded globally with about 900,000 recoveries. Unfortunately, some 200,000 people have passed away as a result of this pandemic.
“The health systems and economies of many nations continue to struggle as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Nigeria continues to adapt to these new global realities on a daily basis. Today, I will present the facts as they are and explain our plans for the coming months fully aware that some key variables and assumptions may change in the coming days or weeks.
“Exactly two weeks ago, there were 323 confirmed cases in 20 States and the Federal Capital Territory. 7. As at this morning, Nigeria had recorded 1,273 cases across 32 States and the FCT. Unfortunately, this includes 40 deaths.
“In line with the recommendations of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, the various Federal Government committees that have reviewed socio-economic matters and the Nigeria Governors Forum, I have approved a phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos and Ogun States effective from Monday, 4th May, 2020.
“However, this will be followed strictly with aggressive reinforcement of testing and contact tracing measures while allowing the restoration of some economic and business activities in certain sectors.”