Dr. Mukhtar Muhammad
Dr. Mukhtar Muhammad, the Head of Technical Secretariat of the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19, has disclosed that the federal government will be issuing a travel ban within the next two days on inbound flights from India, Brazil and Turkey.
Muhammed who expressed concern over the situation in India which is a popular destination for medical tourists from Nigeria, told Nigerians to keep observing all the regulations and instructions to stop a third-wave of Coronavirus infection in the country.
“While we continue to reopen the economy, we must also be aware of the happenings around the globe. Mr. Chairman and Minister of Health have made reference to specific incidences in India, Turkey, Brazil and also South Africa.
“These were taken with serious concern and we continue to monitor what is going on in these countries. We sympathise with the people of these countries because it is really a very trying time particularly for India, that is recording over 300,000 cases a day. And accordingly over 2000 deaths.
“It is not easy. India is a prime destination for medical tourism for Nigeria. We know that many Nigerians like to travel to go to India, but now we see the situation that the country has found itself in. While we urge Nigerians to limit all travellers to only essential travel, particularly to these affected countries.
“We will continue to urge Nigerians to also comply with public health measures that are put in place to continue to ensure that we comply with the regulation.
“We actually empathise with those countries and what is happening in those climes. However, on our part, we are looking seriously into this issue. We are looking at other considerations that we need to provide.
“The health of Nigerians is of prime importance and whatever we need to do to protect Nigeria and to protect Nigerians from going into escalation of this current situation, the PSC will do that as necessarily.
“We will be providing some travel advise in the next 48, 72 hours with particular reference to both Nigerians and those coming into the country to help advise us.”
On threat of a possible third wave, Muhammad said;
“We’re not saying this just for saying sake, but it is important to looking at what is going on around the globe to ensure that we protect our country. The fact that the number of cases in this country are not rising, it does not mean that we are immune or we are completely protected against COVID-19.
“The third wave, the way we see it going on now, it’s only a matter of time. It is not a matter of if, but truly a matter of when it is going to occur. And therefore this measures that have been outlined, we must continue to ensure that we comply and make sure that we protect our public and our communities.”