Coronavirus: El-Rufai extends Kaduna lockdown by two weeks

Governor Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai has extended the coronavirus lockdown in Kaduna state by two weeks, following the expiration of the state’s lockdown which has spanned 60 days.

The Nation reports that the Kaduna state governor spoke on Tuesday, May 26, through his deputy, Dr Hadiza Sabuwa Balarabe in a statewide broadcast.

It was gathered that El-Rufai said the state government has reviewed the Quarantine Orders and has approved the recommendation to extend the partial lockdown regulations for two weeks, with adjustments to permit the reopening of certain sectors.He explained that the extension was intended to preserve the state’s ability to protect citizens, empower them to lead the fight against Covid-19 and make necessary adjustments to the partial lockdown to permit the safe resumption of the pursuit of livelihoods in more sectors.

According to Balarabe, schools, places of worship and markets will remain closed under the adjusted orders. She, however, said efforts will be kickstarted to meet relevant stakeholders to discuss how to reopen the sectors.

She urged the residents to comply with all relevant preventive measures, warning that violation of the guidelines will compel the government to reimpose restrictions.

The deputy governor added that movement restriction will be relaxed on Wednesday, May 27 and Thursday, May 28.

The revised regulations will be effective from Monday, June 1, with a three-day window given o residents every week to shop for food and other essentials.

“Until otherwise stated, the lockdown-free days are Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Temporary neighbourhood markets will continue to operate from 10am to 4pm on these three days, but citizens can move from 6am to 6pm on these lockdown-free days. Informal markets are not allowed and those flouting regulations by turning streets into markets are advised to stop,” she said.

“The adjusted orders also expand the ability of citizens to resume the pursuit of livelihoods, in permitted sectors subject to compliance with health and safety protocols, including physical distancing. Private sector firms that meet these requirements will also operate on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays. This window also allows vulcanisers, welders, mechanics and providers of similar services to operate on the same days.”

The Kaduna deputy governor noted that the ban on interstate and intercity travel remains effective, adding that the nighttime curfew that has been enforced across the state still remains, from 6pm to 6am.

“Restaurants will be allowed to open strictly to offer takeaway services. However, bars, sporting venues and event centres remain closed as are hotels that have not specifically licensed as essential service providers during this period,” she added.