FG Mulls Use of Military to Secure Isolation Centres

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Boss Mustapha

Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha, Thursday said the federal government would engage the armed forces to provide surveillance and control of the isolation centres nationwide to prevent people with the virus from escaping from the centres.

Speaking at the daily press briefing of the task force, Mustapha raised the alarm that perimeter fencing of the isolation centres was not enough to deter people of positive status from trying to escape from the treatment centres and putting the society at risk.

“Most of the facilities have perimeter fencing. And we have been in discussion with the security and armed forces about the need to provide surveillance and control over the isolation centres. I hope we will be able to perfect that in the days and weeks ahead.

“But let me say that perimeter fencing will not deter people from wanting to escape. Let me say this. I saw a video clip of the Kenyan experience – a very high fence, but they were throwing their luggage across the fence and were jumping. And I understood from the news that that same evening, they were apprehended in a club where they had gone to socialise.

“It is this that is informing my position that perimeter fencing will not stop anybody that wants to escape. It is just for our people to develop the culture and sensitivity that they are not just a risk to themselves but a risk to the larger community,” he said.

Mustapha warned that the gradual easing of restrictions on activities and movements should not be mistaken to mean life has returned to normalcy in the country.