Davidson Iriekpen in Lagos and Ernest Chinwo in Port Harcourt
Rivers State Governor, Mr. Nyesom Wike has declared that the total lockdown on Obio/Akpor and Port Harcourt Local Government Areas will resume by 8pm on Sunday, May 17, 2020 until further notice.
In a state broadcast yesterday, the governor said the total lockdown would no longer resume today (Thursday) because the State Security Council took into consideration the suffering of the people over the last two days.
He said: “In consideration of the foregoing, the concerns of our people, and the need for residents to replenish their supplies, especially, the State Security Council has decided to impose a night-time curfew and review the effective date of the complete lockdown on Obio/Akpor and Port Harcourt City Local Government Areas from May 14, 2020 to Sunday, May 17, 2020 by 8.00 p.m.
“Consequently, there will be: (i) a night-time curfew from 8p.m. to 6a.m. on Thursday, May 14, 2020, Friday, May 15, 2020, and Saturday, May 16, 2020; (ii) while the total lockdown on Obio/Akpor and Port Harcourt Local Government Areas will immediately follow from 8p.m. Sunday May 17, 2020 until further notice.
“Furthermore, all residents are again advised to comply with all other established measures, including the compulsory wearing of face masks and the closure of our land, sea and air boundaries and entry routes, which are still in force.”
He added: “We expect residents to make good use of the new four-day daytime window to purchase, restock and prepare for the total lockdown.
“Once again, thank you for your cooperation as we continue to do all we can to stop the spread of this virus in our State with your support by staying at home and staying safe.”
Wike said while on routine monitoring, he observed how difficult it has been for residents to access money from their banks to make purchases during the two-day window that was given.
He said: “This difficulty has, no doubt, prevented most residents of the two affected local government areas from preparing and making adequate provisions for the upkeep of their families when the lockdown returns.
“Time and time again, we have said that the lockdown is a necessary measure, universally applied, to mitigate community transmission of the covid-19 pandemic.
“Our own situation is not and can’t be different. COVID-19 is not only here with us; it is increasing in number of infections as we recorded 16 new cases for today, the highest since the index case, which goes to confirm not only my personal apprehension for our state and the need to be d tough in our mitigation strategies.
“And so, there is no room for politics in this matter. We must discharge our abiding duty to use the primary weapons at our disposal to combat this virus and contain its spread, lest we regret the consequences of our inactivity and indiscretions.”
He added: “And so, there is no room for politics in this matter. We must discharge our abiding duty to use the primary weapons at our disposal to combat this virus and contain its spread, lest we regret the consequences of our inactivity and indiscretions.
“We understand the consequential difficulties, but what we can do in the circumstance is to appeal to the public to endure the attendant discomfort as inevitable sacrifice for the common good of all.
“Suffice to mention that no deliberate harm is ever intended or targeted at anybody neither are we happy with the prevailing hardship on the people as a result of measures we have adopted to fight this deadly virus.”