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COVID-19: PTF to decide on second phase of lockdown by June 30

The Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, Boss Mustapha, said on Monday the task force would continue to monitor developments nationwide in order to take informed decisions on the second phase of the lockdown by June 30.

Mustapha, who disclosed this at the PTF daily press briefing in Abuja, said the task force would re-echo the World Health Organisation (WHO) advisory to countries and their citizens not to equate any slow-down in numbers accompanied by loosening of restrictive measures to translate to a reduction in the dangers faced by humanity.

The PTF had early this month announced the commencement of the second phase of lockdown relaxation.

He said: “Sunday, June 21, 2020, Nigeria crossed the threshold of 20, 000, with our total number rising to 20, 244 confirmed cases.

“This signified to the PTF that more testing has been carried out in recent weeks.

“However, we are not deluded that we are getting enough samples to test. I wish to remind all our citizens that the best strategy remains to test, detect, isolate, and treat.

“That has accounted for the massive expansion in the laboratory network and testing centers.”

The PTF chairman added that the task force had continued to watch developments from other jurisdictions especially those with similar climatic and demographics with Nigeria.

READ ALSO: PTF identifies FCT as red spot for community spread of COVID-19

Mustapha added: “Here Brazil is of particular interest. You would have observed that the number of confirmed cases in Brazil had risen to 1,084,833 thus becoming the second-highest in the whole world and reporting over 50,000 deaths.

“In Africa, WHO has reported that South Africa, Egypt, Nigeria and Ghana have proportionately been the most affected countries on the continent of Africa.

“All these combined, represent a serious wake up call for us all to be responsive and to take full responsibility.

“Our failure to take responsibility threatens the gains we have recorded which is not good for our large population.

“Let me give you a vivid picture of how this virus has spread across our nation by timelines:

“April 16 2020: 442 cases, May 16, 2020: 5,621 cases, June 16, 2020:17, 148 cases

“We really have a choice to make and there is an urgency of yesterday.”

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