Declares use of face mask compulsory
Gov. Udom Emmanuel
By Chioma Onuegbu – Uyo
Governor Udom Emmanuel of Akwa Ibom state government has relaxed the closure of markets in the state for three days in a week.
Emmanuel who announced this in a state-wide broadcast on Saturday morning, while giving an update on the ongoing lockdown imposed to curtail the spread of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic to the state, said the decision to relax cloy of markets was informed on the need for people to stock up their supplies.
He, however, announced that the ban on religious gatherings, hospitality services, social gatherings parties, funerals, and concerts remains in effect until further notice and the compulsory use of face masks in all public places in the state.
His words, “Markets will be opened three times a week, (Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays) between 10 am to 4 pm to enable people to stock up their supplies. Face masks must be worn and social distancing must be observed by all.
“Farmers will be allowed to carry out their tasks and freely transport their food items while wearing facemasks and not be more than three people in any given public transport vehicle. Agricultural produce will be allowed free and easy movement across the State and the use of facemasks must be enforced
“The ban on religious gatherings, hospitality services, social gatherings, parties, funerals, and concerts remain in effect until further notice, while all plazas and recreational centres are to remain closed”.
The governor further announced that a dusk-to-dawn curfew has been imposed all over the state from 8 pm to 6 am effective Monday, May 4th, 2020.
The governor further announced that “All schools will remain closed until further notice. However, our School on Radio programme on AKBC Radio which has been hugely welcomed and popular will continue to address the instructional and teaching needs of our students until we are able to reopen schools
“Non-essential inter-State movements remain prohibited except those involving agricultural produce or medical personnel and equipment.
“All passengers using public transport must make use of the face mask. Tricycles must not carry more than three passengers. Taxis must carry a maximum of three persons (One in front and two behind), and buses must not carry more than two persons per row.
“All public transport operators must provide hand sanitizers in their vehicles. Also, remember that the ban on commercial motorcycles within the precincts of Uyo capital city is still in effect.
Governor Emmanuel stressed that to help reopen our economy and get the machinery of governance moving again, a phased resumption of duties would come into effect.
“All Commissioners and Permanent Secretaries should work out modalities that will get the staff of their respective Ministries to return to work in batches.
“However, they should ensure that not more than 30 per cent of the workforce of each Ministry, Department, and Agency is at work at any given time. All workers should observe social distancing and personal hygiene requirements including the compulsory use of face mask”, he advised.
He, however, thanked God for those patients that recovered from the deadly COVID-19 disease and expressed the optimism that with the continued excellent work of the healthcare professionals and the strict adherence of the preventive measures especially social distancing and personal hygiene the pandemic would be effectively contained.