Ogun state government late Thursday, announced the relaxation of the total lockdown earlier imposed on the state as part of measures to flatten the coronavirus pandemic curve as from June 1.
Governor Dapo Abiodun, who made the announcement, while addressing newsmen on the efforts of his administration at fighting the spread of the deadly virus, said movement across the state will be allowed between Monday to Fridays, except weekends when the lockdown will be observed again.
Abiodun, who explained that lifting of the lockdown across the state forms the phase II of the crusade against COVID-19 pandemic, declared that worship centers will remain shut pending when religious leaders in conjunction with the appropriate government committee finalise guidelines for their reopening.
He further explained that for government to ease restriction placed on worship centers, religious leaders will have to show proof of their readiness to adhere to the laid down rules on prevention of community spread of COVID-19 which include sitting arrangement plans and time restriction among others.
Emphasising that the ban on inter – state travels as announced by the federal government as well as restrictions on gym centers, cinemas, saloon among others are still in force, the governor also disclosed that the state’s taskforce on COVID-19 will be monitoring activities at banks to ensure that maximum number of customers allowed into banking halls are not more than 15.
The governor explained that the new measure became necessary due to the fact that the total number of COVID-19 infection in the state within the past one week has being on the increase according to available statistics.
“We will always strike the right balance between the need for our people to pursue their economic activities whilst discharging our duties of safeguarding public health and safety.
“But, from May 21 and yesterday, May 27, we recorded 59 new positive cases, an increase of 32 per cent, bringing the total number of positive cases to date to 242. Sadly, we regret the loss of three people, two of whom were confirmed positive after their death. This brings the total mortality to nine, as against six at the last briefing.
“Therefore, in consideration of the need to increasingly allow economic activities and after consultations with stakeholders, and based on expert advice from medical scientists and data analysis, the second phase of the eased lockdown will commence on the first of June, as indicated last week.
“All the existing guidelines to combat COVID-19 in the etate remain in place. Specific guidelines to guide the operations of industries have been issued and must be fully complied with by all industries, as part of preparations for full operations.
“The curfew from 8.00pm to 6.00am as directed by the President is still in place. Restrictions on Inter – state travel are also retained. Wearing of face masks in the public is still mandatory.
“The infection prevention and control guidelines for work places in Ogun state to combat COVID-19 have been issued. All industries in Ogun state are expected to comply with these guidelines.
“A task force has been set up to conduct random spot -checks on the premises of the industries, restaurants and other business enterprises to confirm compliance.
“I wish to reiterate and warn that violation of any of the guidelines will be treated as a threat to our collective well- being and will be met with appropriate penalties,” he said.