COVID-19: Nigeria not at risk of a lockdown- Ehanire
The federal government has given reasons why it is not considering a lockdown yet to curtail the spread of Delta variant of COVID-19.
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire during the weekly ministerial briefing on the third wave of COVID-19 ruled out the possibility of a fresh lockdown citing the effects on the economy and everyday life.
He said “Lockdown is a very last measure that countries are taking because lockdown stifles economic activity, restricts your own freedom and your business – corporate business, government business, private business all are affected.
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“So it’s not something you do easily. And of course when we were compelled to have that lockdown at the beginning we learnt a lot of lessons.
“You know, at that time government provided palliatives to release the impact of it, if you couldn’t go to market if you couldn’t do your business.”
He stated that countries now employ precision lockdowns on specific areas of the country under threat.
“But this is not what government is aiming to do. No government wants to do a lockdown.
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“So, many countries do what they call precision lockdown so that not everybody will be affected, only certain areas to avoid too much damage to the economy, to social life.
The health minister further assured Nigerians that the new variant of the virus does not pose the sort of threat that might warrant a lockdown of any form.
“And we are not at the level yet where we are feeling that threat to do any lockdown. And as I speak to you now there are several countries that are on one kind of locked or the other, if my recollection is correct at least six or seven countries that are doing one form of lockdown or the other. We do not have that on the table right.”
He revealed that the country has paid for about 30 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine apart from the ones sourced free of charge and the country hopes to purchase about 40 million doses of the vaccines in all.