COVID-19: Ekiti bans large gatherings, vehicle overloading

Governor Kayode Fayemi

Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State

By Ariwodola Idowu

Ekiti Government on Tuesday announced new measures to contain the increasing cases of the COVID-19 pandemic across all the 16 local governments areas of the state.

Governor Kayode Fayemi made the announcement after an emergency briefing anchored by the Commissioner for Health, Dr Oyebanji Filani in Ado-Ekiti.

This is the third time the state government would be imposing such restrictions between 2020 and August 2021.

Justifying the state government’s latest action, Fayemi said that 180 cases were recorded from July to the last few days in August alone.

He explained that, as a way of curtailing the third wave, restrictions had been re-imposed on social, religious and political gatherings across the state and directed transporters to reduce the number of their passengers by half.

Fayemi said that all efforts must be geared toward stopping the further spread of the deadly variant in the state.

According to him, the state recorded 95 cases in July and frighteningly 85 cases in the last few days in the month of August.

“We are constrained to respond to this development with the following non-pharmaceutical control measures which remain our best means of containing the pandemic in the state.”

“It is my duty to inform you that Ekiti State is experiencing an unwelcome increase in the number of COVID-19 confirmed positive cases.

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“We are obviously experiencing the third wave with more cases than we experienced in the second wave in March 2021.

“Besides, with the introduction of the Delta strain of the COVID-19 virus in the country and the recent evidence of its community transmission as reported by NCDC, it is imperative for us as a state, to enforce our existing COVID-19 regulations more strictly to safeguard the health of our people.”

He directed that public gatherings, especially social, political and business in the state should be restricted to only 50 people with the social distancing of six feet and mandatory use of face masks.

On religious centres, Fayemi said: “Our religious gatherings in the state would be with temporary restrictions, starting from Friday, Aug. 13, 2021, for Muslims and Sunday, Aug. 15, 2021, for Christians.

“All gatherings must be held in strict and full compliance with the regulations regarding worship centres, which include social distancing of six feet between worshippers, handwashing and wearing of face masks.”

He maintained that officials of the state government would be out to monitor the level of compliance, saying that defaulters would be punished in accordance with the law.

The governor disclosed that the state was expecting about 95,000 doses of Moderna vaccine in addition to the earlier AstraZeneca vaccine received, called on residents to make themselves available for the second phase of the vaccination.

“Evidence has shown that fully vaccinated individuals are protected from severe COVID-19 infection and death. Vaccines have been confirmed to be safe and 70,049 people have received at least one dose of the vaccine in the state without any side effects.

“As we await the second phase of the vaccination, I encourage all eligible citizens to take their jabs as soon as the vaccines are available,” the governor said.


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