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FCT minister vows crackdown on COVID-19 lockdown defaulters

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By Ben Adoga

In accordance with Presidential directive, the FCT Minister has directed the enforcement of the president’s cessation of movement in the FCT.

Minister of the FCT, Malam Muhammad Musa Bello in his press briefing Monday reiterated that defaulters would be arrested and prosecuted. “I am appealing to all residents of the FCT to stay at home and abide by the regulations of health authorities. Except those on exempted, all others should stay at home. Security agencies have been empowered to arrest and prosecute those found wanting.

“We will not allow any individual or groups to jeopardise the health of others. The lockdown is well intended, there will be no entry or exit from the FCT from the stipulated time, which is 11 pm Monday. Everybody should stay where they are so that we can reach them if the need arises.”

The FCT Minister said restriction of movements has worked in parts of the world where the pandemic ravaged earlier and that it would make contact tracing easier.

The Minister also assured that palliative measures was being put in place to take care of the vulnerable. He said the FCT has established a robust mechanism to take care of the poor.

Also, an FCT Palliative Committee has been constituted with the Minister of State, Dr. Ramatu Tijani Aliyu as chairman. Other members are the six area council chairmen, traditional rulers, members of the NGO and other support groups.

A system of identifying beneficiary groups, the Minister said the Administration will rely on the 62 INEC wards in the FCT and that it already has data  base of conditional cash transfer record to rely on. He also said that the vulnerable by Faith based organisations and churches would be contacted.

He said the Minister of State for FCT would coordinate women groups, the youth and other vulnerable groups for the purpose of the palliative.

The Minister, however, made it clear that cash would not be involved in the palliative measures.

He urged the well to do in the society to reach out to those in need, while every body needs to sacrifice and help curb the spread of Coronavirus.

The Minister called on residents to cooperate and obey all safety measures, maintain personal hygiene and stay at home.

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