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Nigeria: Covid-19 – Anambra Postpones Reopening of Schools, Threatens to Close Markets

Following the surge in COVID-19 cases in Anambra State, the state governor, Chief Willie Obiano has postponed the reopening of schools in the state by two weeks.

Obiano stated this yesterday in his broadcast to the people of the state.

He also banned any gathering exceeding 50 people in the state, while threatening to close any market that would violate COVID-19 protocol.

He said the decisions had become necessary following the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic that was “sweeping across the world”.

“Sadly, it appears that our warnings fell on deaf ears. Our people allowed themselves to be carried away by the joys of the Yuletide and failed to maintain the COVID-19 protocols.”

Obiano added that the state had been faced with a clear and present danger, adding that between December 7, 2020, and January 11, 2021, the state had recorded 110 new cases of COVID-19.

The governor’s address read in part, “My administration has taken a string of hard decisions to stamp out the renewed spread of this pandemic before it gains a serious advantage over us.

“All government offices must observe the standard COVID-19 protocols – washing of hands at the entrance, wearing of facemasks, regular use of hand sanitizers, and strict observance of social distancing. Nobody will be allowed into any government premises without properly wearing a face mask.

“No one should step outside their homes without wearing a facemask.

” The ban on nightclubs is still firmly in place. Hotels are directed to ensure strict compliance with COVID-19 protocols.

“There should not be more than 50 people in any public gathering.

“The COVID-19 Action Teams in all our 61 markets must ensure full compliance with the standard COVID-19 protocols.

“All markets in Anambra State are given one week to set-up the necessary safety standards and ensure proper compliance. Any market found violating the standards after one week shall be quickly shut down.

“Transport operators are advised to revert to all the practices that helped us during the first wave of the pandemic. They must ensure social distancing inside the vehicles and maintain a passenger manifest.

“Schools in Anambra shall not re-open on January 18, 2021 as earlier scheduled. Rather, schools will re-open after two weeks from today to enable the principals and teachers prepare for the return of our children .

“Churches and other religious organisations are advised to set up Action Teams and go back to the practices that helped us in the first phase of the pandemic. For the sake of emphasis, nobody should go to any market, public places, church, schools, enter any transport, attend functions as stated above without properly wearing facemasks.”