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The Lagos State governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, said on Saturday that the government may impose a total lockdown in the state if violations of health guidelines persist.

Lagos is the epicentre of the pandemic in Nigeria. As of Saturday, the state had 1,683 confirmed cases of coronavirus, 1184 active cases, 448 discharged cases, and 33 deaths.

Mr Sanwo-Olu said Twitter handle on Saturday to register his disappointment at the level of violation of the guidelines, saying the government will be forced to review the terms of lockdown easing if Lagos residents continue flouting the orders.

“Despite massive advocacy, it is disappointing to see the crowd at banks & markets across the state flouting the guidelines,” he said.

“We will be forced to take the painful decision of bringing the state under lockdown if it remains clear that Lagosians are determined to flout the rules.”

Mr Sanwo-Olu said the state is at a critical point in the management of the COVID-19 pandemic in and every resident needs to take responsibility for their health and wellbeing.

“As citizens, we have a great burden upon us, to behave responsibly. These times demand a lot from us, in terms of actions and behaviours that may not be comfortable. It is difficult to adjust to the changes, but adjust, we must.

“As a government elected to uphold the security of its citizens, which includes health security, we will not hesitate to review the terms of easing the lockdown if we do not see an improvement in the adherence to our public health guidelines over the next couple of days,” the governor said.

Mr Sanwo-Olu said in the weeks ahead, there will be a change in the state’s isolation strategy which will be transitioned towards decentralization.

“We will be introducing community management of cases by accrediting primary healthcare facilities for the management of mild-to-moderate cases of COVID-19 patients,” he said.

Mr Sanwo-Olu added that low compliance with the guidelines by operators of commercial buses and the flouting of the directive by commercial motorcycles will not be tolerated and the security agencies have been directed to confiscate any motorcycle seen flouting the rules.

“Getting rid of COVID-19 in our state must be a collective responsibility. It is not something the government can do alone. We must all do our part.

“The wearing of a face mask in public is not a suggestion. It is a necessity and mandatory,” he said.

Mr Sanwo-Olu said the government was committed to strengthening capacity in combating the pandemic and every citizen must do their part.

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