NCDC cautions Nigerians against non-essential travels

 NCDC cautions Nigerians against non-essential travels

By Modupe Shodeinde

Nigerians have been warned against embarking on non-essential domestic and international travels during the yuletide period to curb the spread of the covid-19 pandemic.

The centre gave this caution in a public health advisory issued on Monday.

The Director-General of NCDC, Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu explained that the advisory was important particularly, for intending travellers from countries recording a high number of COVID-19 cases.

Ihekweazu advised the public to limit festivities to members of their immediate household and stay socially connected to friends and loved one through virtual means.

Acrossthe world, Christmas is a time for celebration and festive cheer, as well as an increase in religious and social gatherings.

During the Christmas and New Year celebrations, we recognise that people want to travel and be with family and friends. However, this has been a difficult year and the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted our usual way of living and we all have to make adjustments in our lives to the new reality we are faced with.

“The coronavirus does not spread on its own; it spreads when people move around. This means that by travelling across countries and cities, there is a higher risk of transmission, especially to rural areas where the existing health infrastructure is already weak.” he said
He advised Nigerians to limit person-to-person contact and observe health precautions including the use of face mask, maintaining physical distance, use of sanitizers among others.

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The director also cautioned people to avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of a respiratory illness, stay at home if unwell and call their state helplines.

Stating that Nigeria has recorded over 67,000 COVID-19 cases, over 1,000 deaths, he advised the organisation of virtual services and prayer sessions to limit mass congregation.

He encouraged public settings including religious settings, businesses, and markets to ensure adherence to public health and safety measures.

According to him, passengers must remain in self-isolation for seven days on return to Nigeria, even if you they test negative on entry and a repeat PCR test must be carried out on the 7th day after arrival.

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