THE Senate has condemned the breach of the presidential order on curfew and ban on interstate travels aimed at containing COVID-19, and directed the Inspector-General, Mohammed Adamu and the Commandant-General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, (NSCDC) Mr. Abdullahi Gana Muhammadu, to ensure compliance and investigate the breaches.
The President of the Senate, Ahmed Lawan, who described the breaches as “a very serious challenge,” noted that “there is need for proper enforcement of the restrictions on interstate travels; apparently, there is so much breach and interference.
The Senate impressed on the Inspector-General and the Commandant-General of NSCDC to ensure full cooperation of their commands with state authorities in enforcing the presidential orders and other protocols on the coronavirus pandemic, as the security agencies, have the responsibility to enforce the ban on interstate movement.
In a motion, “Need to Enforce Presidential Order Banning Non-Essential Interstate Movement,” the former Deputy President of the Senate, Ike Ekweremadu, Tuesday, said the Senate was alarmed at the spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in the country.
The numbers as at Tuesday, stood at 4,641 cases and 150 deaths, well as the daily confirmed cases, which he noted was now hundreds.
Ekweremadu (PDP, Enugu West), reflected that President Muhammadu Buhari, relying on Section 3 of the Quarantine Act, CAP Q2 Laws of the Federation 2004 issued the Proclamation Order on the General Management of COVID-19, banning non-essential inter-state travels and imposing a curfew.
He recalled that the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and the Nigeria Governors’ Forum (NGF) had raised alarm over interstate movement, despite the order to the contrary, worsened by the concealment of people in food-carrying vehicles.
In a statement by his Media Adviser, Uche Anichukwu, the former deputy President of the Senate, noted that the Senate is conscious of the implications of the breach of the presidential order, saying that “the Senate is very worried about reports of alleged complicity in the said breaches by those who are supposed to enforce compliance.”
It directed the IGP, Commandant-General of the NSCDC and heads of all security agencies charged with enforcing the ban on interstate travel “to investigate the alleged complicity of their officers in the breach of the curfew and ban on interstate travels and bring to book anyone found wanting.
“Beyond interstate travels, the observance of social distancing suffers inside the states. It is important that citizens do this because it is for ourselves and our family members.”