Nigeria’s federal government has put six states and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) on red alert as part of the preventive measures against the third wave of Covid-19.
The Presidential Steering Committee (PSC), in a statement late Saturday night, said the measure was adopted following the confirmation of the Delta variant of Covid-19 and the rising number of infections and hospitalisation across the country.
In addition to the FCT, the six states are Lagos, Oyo, Rivers, Kaduna, Kano and Plateau.
The Chairman, PSC, who also doubles as the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr Boss Mustapha, signed the statement.
The PSC, however, warned all states of the federation to heighten their state of preparedness and continue to enforce all protocols put in place, given the greater ease of spread of the Delta variant.
He said the steps were critical as there were worrisome early signs of increasing cases in the country.
He added that the PSC would continue to minimize the risk of importation of variants of concern into the country by strengthening surveillance at all Points of Entry (POE), enforcing extant quarantine protocols and sustaining the current restrictive measures against travellers from India, Brazil, Turkey and South Africa.
While PSC felicitatated with the Muslim faithful on the occasion of the Eid-el-Kabir celebration, the PSC, also urged all state governments and religious leaders to be mindful of the potential for wider spread of the virus during large gatherings.
In the light of the latest development, the PSC, has recommended for safe Eid-el-Kabir celebration, preventive measures such as decentralisation of Eid Prayer to neighborhood Friday prayer mosques (outdoor); suspension of Durbar activities and observation of limitations on all indoor gatherings.
It reminded Nigerians and all residents to ensure they stay safe at all time.
Olawale Ajimotokan in Abuja