Ahead of the Yuletide and its accompanying festivities and travels, the Federal Ministry of Health (FMOH) has advised Nigerians against unnecessary travels and gatherings.
The Minister of Health, Dr Osagie Ehanire, who gave the advice in Abuja on Monday explained that it was to curb the possible spike in the spread of COVID-19.
He spoke during the Joint National Briefing of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19.
“Travel over the upcoming holiday period should be restricted and all associated social activities, curtailed.
“Nigerians are advised to cut off all travels, especially international travels, most especially travels to high burden countries except it is very urgent.
“This is particularly important given the threat posed by the spiraling rate of infection in countries with which Nigeria has strong political, business, social and family relations.
“There is correspondingly high volume of travel between Nigeria and those countries, which is what also determines the risk
“This is a sacrifice we must make to preserve lives. The elderly and persons with delicate health should best not travel or mix in crowds.
“The experience from Thanksgiving celebration in the U.S. indicates a serious COVID-19 spike from the travels and specialisations that went with the holiday.
“This should be a lesson for us,” he advised.
The minister reminded Nigerians that COVID-19 was not over yet.
According to him, all Nigerians have a responsibility to work with government to defeat the COVID-19 pandemic.
“It is, therefore, more realistic that we adopt preventive measures which have been proven to be successful in controlling the pandemic.
“Observe physical distancing and respiratory hygiene, wear your face masks appropriately especially in public places and regular hand washing and use of hand sanitisers,” Ehanire advised.