Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Honourable Minister for Information and Culture

COVID-19: Nigeria says no fresh lockdown, increases testing labs to 100

*The Federal Government has not said it will impose another lockdown, but it is not happy that Nigerians are not observing all the COVID-19 protocols such as washing of hands and wearing of nose masks ─Lai Mohammed, Minister for Information and Culture

Emmanuel Akosile | ConsumerConnect

The Federal Government has said that the economic and social implications may make it difficult for Nigeria to impose another lockdown in the country for now.

Alhaji Lai Mohammed, Honourable Minister for Information and Culture, who disclosed this at a media briefing in Lagos, Monday, January 4, 2021, however, urged Nigerians to adhere strictly to all COVID-19 protocols issued by the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19.

Mohammed stated: “I don’t think there is anywhere the Federal Government said it would impose another lockdown.

“However, the Federal Government is not happy that Nigerians are not observing all the Covid-19 protocols like washing of hands and wearing of face masks.”

The Minister also noted that the Federal Government is aware of the economic and social implications of having another lockdown.

“The Federal Government will, however, urge Nigerians to follow all the COVID-19 protocols,” said he.

Healthcare workers in the NCDC National Reference Laboratory   Photo: The Punch

On the recent increase of COVID-19 testing laboratories in the country, Mohammed explained: “From just two national reference laboratories for the testing of COVID-19, we now have over 100 laboratories, public and private, across all the states of the federation.”

He as well noted that “treatment centres were also built, in collaboration with the states and the private sector (CA-COVID), across the country to isolate and treat cases of COVID-19, while the Federal Government, through the Sustainable Production Pillar of the PTF, has been encouraging local manufacturing companies to embark on the production of consumables such as face masks, ventilators, hand sanitisers and face shields.

“To mitigate the impact of Covid-19 on the economy across all levels, the Federal Government unveiled the Economic Sustainability Plan to support families, small and medium enterprises and the manufacturing sector, among others.”

ConsumerConnect reports that from two initial national reference laboratories, Nigeria now has over 100 public and private laboratories across all the states for the testing of COVID-19.

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