Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari has introduced a 14-day extension to a lockdown in Lagos, Abuja and Ogun states to fight the coronavirus pandemic.
In a televised handle on Monday, Buhari stated “it has turn into vital to increase the present restriction of motion” that was set to run out later within the day.
Preliminary 14-day lockdowns within the three areas started on March 30.
There are presently 323 confirmed instances of the virus in Nigeria, with 71 % of them registered in Lagos and the capital territory of Abuja. Ten folks have died thus far.
“It’s a matter of life and dying,” Buhari stated of the nation’s response. “The repercussions of any untimely finish to the lockdown motion are unimaginable.”
Nigeria, with 200 million folks, is Africa’s most populous nation. Some 20 million reside within the megacity of Lagos.
Well being consultants have raised alarms over the impression of a significant coronavirus outbreak, warning that the nation’s unprepared and underfunded healthcare system might shortly turn into overwhelmed.
The extension of the lockdown is predicted so as to add to the hardship of hundreds of thousands of Nigerians residing hand-to-mouth, usually on lower than one greenback a day.
Buhari stated he was “totally conscious of the nice difficulties skilled particularly by those that earn a each day wage”.
“However regardless of these realities, we should not change the restrictions,” he added.
The federal government has pledged a sequence of help measures to ease the monetary ache for essentially the most weak, however there have been widespread complaints that not sufficient is being achieved for these going through starvation.
“The overwhelming majority of Nigerians depend upon each day wages, they should exit to get cash and purchase meals to place it on the desk for his or her households,” Al Jazeera’s Ahmed Idris, reporting from the capital, Abuja, stated.
“For the following two weeks, they’re going to keep at house with no work and no likelihood of getting cash.”
In the meantime, police stated on Monday that they had been bolstering forces in Lagos and Ogun after nearly 200 suspects had been arrested amid fears of a spike in crime in the course of the lockdown.
Buhari stated compliance with the stay-at-home order and different restrictions launched by state governors throughout the nation had been “typically good”.
However he cautioned that “a big proportion of recent infections at the moment are occurring in our communities”.
Al Jazeera and information companies