Kwara state government has said that its lock down will henceforth involve more stringent measures to ensure better compliance with the stay home order.
Announcing this development at a press briefing on Sunday, the Chairman of the Technical committee on COVID 19, Kayode Alabi who was joined in by the Commissioner of Police, Kayode Egbetokun and the Airforce Commandant, said that the reports of the past few days of the lock down has not been encouraging adding that if there must be a result, stricter measures must be introduced.
Alabi commended all workers on essential duties ensuring the success of the exercise as well as Kwarans who had demonstrated understanding and maturity in compliance with directives expressing awareness that the stay home order is not an easy experience but maintained that it was a choice between allowing people to go out and experiencing death by contracting COVID 19 disease.
“The truth is that we are in a dire situation. Drastic measures, as we have taken, are required to urgently contain the spread of this virus before it kills everyone or brings down human civilization as it is threatening to do. Our best shot is to stay at home, maintain physical distancing, constantly wash our hands, and practice good coughing or sneezing etiquette, among other safety protocols.”
“However, the government is very displeased with the reckless violation of the no-movement directive. Going forward, punitive actions shall be taken against anyone who violates the regulations. All the security agencies have been briefed to arrest violators.”
“For the avoidance of doubt, all our markets remain open on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays between the hours of 8a.m. and 12noon for people to restock food and other essentials.”
“But there shall be no vehicular movements of any kind except for those on essential duties and trucks conveying foods and drugs and associated services earlier exempted. For emphasis, Okada, Keke Napep, taxi, private vehicles and other vehicular movements are disallowed.”
The Chairman advise Kwarans to patronise only markets nearer to their places of residence in tractable distances as movements to the markets shall be by foot adding that anyone caught violating these regulations will be prosecuted in the mobile courts and sanctioned accordingly.
He said: “People are to note that convictions at this mobile courts carries the same consequences as other judicial convictions.”
“Government is working with market leaders to urgently create more neighbourhood markets to further ease people’s access to essential commodities.”
“We admit that these measures are truly hard and extraordinary. But they are the only means to flattening the curve of transmission in our state and prevent avoidable deaths and sufferings. The only alternative is to let everyone go about their normal business and let everyone get infected. No responsible government should ever allow that to open. You have elected us to protect you. We urge you to give us all the support to make that happen.”
Once again, we commend our health workers for their sacrifices. We promise to stand by you and protect you now and always. Apart from the thousands of PPEs the government had earlier distributed across our 45 hospitals, we just took delivery of new consignments of PPEs which we have started distributing since yesterday.
“I repeat: people can go on foot to their neighbourhood markets to restock essential commodities on Mondays, Wednesday, and Fridays between 8am and 12 noon. But all unauthorised vehicular movements are banned until further notice.”