The Federal Government Approves Interstate Movement


The federal government has approved what it tagged “safe reopening” of schools nationwide in the next phase of the gradual easing of lockdown ordered to curtail further spread of COVID-19.

The nation has been on lockdown since March. With the lock down being eased gradually as it was done in other countries as well.

The coronavirus has put a lot of things on hold in the nation with the presidency declaring total lock down in March to curb the spread of the novel virus.

The government has also lifted the ban on interstate travels opening roads for people to move from one state to the other. Interstate travels can, however, and only be done outside curfew hours with effect from July 1 2020.

The Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19,Mustapha, disclosed this at the daily briefing of the task force in Abuja on Monday.

He said the reopening of schools was meant to allow students in graduating classes, final year students, Waec students and others who are waiting to write certification exams to resume preparation for their examinations.

Mr Mustapha said the second phase of the gradual easing of the lockdown in the country has also been extended by four weeks.

In his statement, Mr Mustapha said “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.  

“Specifically, however, the following measures shall either remain in place or come into effect:

Maintaining the current phase of the national response, for another four weeks in line with modifications to be expatiated by the National Coordinator;
Permission of movement across State borders only outside curfew hours with effect from 1st July, 2020.

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. The lockdown was eased to a nationwide night curfew (8 p.m. to 6 a.m.) from May 4 to May 17. With different people at the helms of affairs, many states, amended the curfew time, largely to commence from 10 p.m. and end at 5 a.m to reduce the spread of the virus and also give room for citizens to go about their daily businesses whilst still paying attention to the safety guidelines laid down to help reduce the risk of contracting the novel virus.

The first phase of the relaxed lockdown was extended by two weeks and elapsed midnight June 1. The second phase commenced June 2 and elapses by midnight today, June 29 afterwhich interstate movement will commence on the 1st of July 2020. The idea was welcomed by the citizenry who have grown tired of the movement restrictions. The government however urged the people to exercise patience, care amd caution so as to flatten the curve.

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