The second phase of the gradual easing of the lockdown in the country has been extended by four weeks, the Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, has said.

Nigeria imposed its first round of lockdown in late March. Mr Buhari on April 27 announced the gradual easing of the five-week lockdown in FCT, Lagos and Ogun state.

The lockdown was eased to a nationwide night curfew (8 p.m. to 6 a.m.) from May 4 to May 17. The curfew was later amended by many state governments to commence from 10:00 p.m.

The first phase of the relaxed lockdown was extended by two weeks and elapsed midnight June 1. The second phase commenced on June 2 and elapses by midnight today, June 29.

Mr Mustapha while speaking at the daily Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 briefing, on Monday, said the extension of the second phase was approved by President Buhari.

“I am pleased to inform you that Mr President has carefully considered the 5th Interim Report of the PTF and has accordingly approved that, with the exception of some modifications to be expatiated upon later, the Phase Two of the eased lockdown be extended by another four weeks with effect from Tuesday, June 30, 2020, through Midnight of Monday, 27 July, 2020,” he said.

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Nigeria currently has about 24,567 confirmed cases of the virus, including 565 deaths.

A breakdown shows that Lagos State has so far reported 10,144 cases, followed by FCT – 1,792, Oyo – 1, 306, Kano – 1, 200, Rivers – 1, 056, Edo – 962, Delta – 912, Ogun –782, Kaduna – 703, Katsina – 549, Bauchi – 500, Gombe – 492, Borno – 486, Ebonyi – 395, Plateau – 337, Jigawa – 317, Imo – 303, Abia – 302, Enugu – 261, Ondo – 244, Kwara – 217, Nasarawa – 206, Bayelsa – 185, Sokoto – 151, Osun – 116, Akwa Ibom – 86, Adamawa – 84, Niger – 84, Kebbi – 76, Zamfara – 76, Anambra – 71, Yobe – 59, Benue – 47, Ekiti – 43, Taraba- 19 and Kogi – 4.

Extension

Mr Mustapha who is also the head of the PTF said the extension of the second phase is necessary to consolidate the gains in the areas of the economy.

He said this will also ensure better compliance with the health-based response.

He said the extension will also “support the states in enforcing guidelines and protocols as well as strengthening the LGAs build community-level structures for ownership and effective risk communication; and

“help to better achieve the balance between saving lives and ensuring that wellbeing and livelihood of citizens are protected.”

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