COVID-19: FG issues advisory for Christmas, New Year holidays

The Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19 (PSC) has urged Nigerians to celebrate the Christmas and New Year holidays responsibly.

The Chairman, PSC on COVID-19, who is also the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha made the call in a statement on Thursday in Abuja.

“As we prepare to celebrate with our families and loved ones, it is important that we do so safely by taking the necessary precautionary measures to stop the further spread of COVID-19 in our country.

“Nigeria is now experiencing the 4th wave COVID- 19 as new cases have continued to rise. 

“This is the result of a mix of very low vaccination coverage, increased travels and movements, reduced compliance to public health social measures, and highly transmissible Omicron SARS-CoV-2 variant now circulating in the country,” he added. 

The PSC Chairman strongly appealed to Nigerians to imbibe the culture of citizen’s responsibility and observe the following safety measures to reduce community transmission of COVID- 19 during the festive period.

“Avoid activities that involve mass gathering especially in enclosed spaces, as follows; Families are advised to limit the number of visitors to their homes and put in place precautionary safety measures;

“Any gathering in excess of 50 people should be done in open spaces with physical distancing;

“Indoor religious congregation should be limited to 50 percent capacity with full compliance to public health social measures, and Face masks and hand sanitizers should be used at all times regardless of vaccination status while in public spaces;

“Avoid non-essential interstate travel at this period as this increases the risk of spreading infection from one place to another. 

“People who intend to travel are encouraged to take a rapid COVID-19 test to confirm status as many infected persons are asymptomatic;

“ Ensure that you have taken the full dose of COVID-19 vaccination including the booster dose to reduce your risk of severe infection and death in case of exposure to COVID-19.

“Seize the opportunity provided by the mass-vaccination campaign to ensure that your family and loved ones receive their COVID-19 vaccines including the 3rd dose (booster shot) at the nearest vaccination centre,” he said.

The SGF also reminded  Nigerians of the need to continue to comply with COVID-19 safety measures in order to reduce the surge of new COVID-19 cases which may overburden the country’s healthcare system. 

He noted that the PSC may be forced to consider the introduction of additional restrictions on gatherings and curfews if the current surge in the number of cases continues.

“The PSC wishes all Nigerians a Merry Christmas and Happy Year 2022,” he said.


By Amos Kalu

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