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Most Nigerian Returnees Now Avoid Coronavirus PCR Test – FG

Boss Mustapha

Boss Mustapha

The Federal Government has come out to say that about 65 percent of Nigerians returning to the country are currently failing to comply with the PCR test protocol amid the coronavirus pandemic.

FG recently revealed that it has already began the process of seizing the international passports of these erring returnees.

According to the Secretary to the Government of the Federation SGF and Chairman of The Presidential Taskforce PTF on COVID-19, Mr. Boss Mustapha, the next week or two remains critical if the country will curb the recent spike in cases, so everyone must remain compliant.

He added that statistics from the records show that only one out of three passengers have shown up for the in-country test.

His words, “As you may recall, the PTF announced the guidelines on the reopening of the airspace and the obligations of arriving passengers. The PTF similarly announced sanctions as a consequence of any infraction. Having observed serious non-compliance to the level of 65%, the need has arisen to activate the sanctions which includes the suspension of the passports of such defaulting individuals for a period of six months minimum”.

“The next week or two remain critical. The PTF has noted with sadness the failure of Nigerians who arrived from abroad to present themselves for the in-country PCR test which they signed up to and paid before arrival. Statistics emerging from our records show that only one out of three passengers have shown up for the in-country test.”

“Plateau, Rivers and Gombe have reached over 50% of target, while 25 states are yet to reach 25% of their population. We do not have the confidence to draw firm conclusions on our status, till this situation improves.

“Our concern is heightened by several emerging factors that challenge whatever gains we may have made in recent months:the inevitable need to reopen air travel, to stimulate economic activities, the imminent Reopening of schools and Youth Service, again necessary for restoration of social order, but which global experience links with spikes in covid infection rates in most countries the effect of recent social agitation and unrest, with attendant disruption of services and widespread breach of all infection prevention protocols, the growing lackadaisical attitude to covid19 and disregard for safety and simple infection prevention and control measures, which I must admit, is not peculiar to our country.

“While we still evaluate the impact of recent unguarded mass gatherings in various parts of the country as a risk factor for spreading COVID-19, my concern is that we may find a spike in confirmed cases, with the widespread disregard for preventive measures associated with large gatherings and movements. We must take collective responsibility for each others actions, if we are not to experience the upsurges in new cases experienced in many other countries, and a throwback to conditions worse than the present”.

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