President Buhari Signs Financial Autonomy of State Legislature & State Judiciary into Law | This is What it Means

President Muhammadu Buhari has signed into law the financial autonomy to the legislature and judiciary across the 36 states of the country.
The President shared the news on his personal Twitter page:
Based on the power vested in me under Section 5 of the 1999 Constitution (as Amended), I, today, signed into law Executive Order No. 10 of 2020 for the implementation of Financial Autonomy of State Legislature and State Judiciary.
This administration will continue to do everything to strengthen the principles and practice of democracy and democratic governance in Nigeria.

This administration will continue to do everything to strengthen the principles and practice of democracy and democratic governance in Nigeria.
— Muhammadu Buhari (@MBuhari) May 22, 2020

Providing more information on the new law, the Attorney General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami, says the executive order means that the legislative and judicial arms of government across the 36 states in Nigeria, will no longer be tied to the governors, and will receive their financial allocations straight from the centre.
In a statement made available to newsmen in Abuja, Vanguard reports that the new order says:
The Accountant-General of the Federation shall by this Order and such any other Orders, Regulations or Guidelines as may be issued by the Attorney-General of the Federation and Minister of Justice, authorise the deduction from source in the course of Federation Accounts Allocation from the money allocated to any State of the Federation that fails to release allocation meant for the State Legislature and State Judiciary in line with the financial autonomy guaranteed by Section 121(3) of the Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria 1999 (as Amended).
Article 6 (1) provides that:
Notwithstanding the provisions of this Executive Order, in the first three years of its implementation, there shall be special extraordinary capital allocations for the Judiciary to undertake capital development of State Judiciary Complexes, High Court Complexes, Sharia Court of Appeal, Customary Court of Appeal and Court Complexes of other Courts befitting the status of a Courts.
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Dele Momodu had the Best Birthday even while in Isolation ❤

Dele Momodu turned 60 on Saturday, and although physical distancing rules may stop him from throwing a party, it’s not stopping his loved ones from showing him SO MUCH LOVE.
While the media mogul had a quiet celebration with his family in his home, love for him poured in from across the world, coming first from Australia, and then everywhere else, including from President Muhammadu Buhari and Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

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Officially, I’M NOW 60 IN AUSTRALIA, and my first congratulation comes from CHIEF ABIOLA FALAYAJO in Melbourne… Thank you my dear Brother…
A post shared by CHIEF DR DELE MOMODU (@delemomoduovation) on May 15, 2020 at 11:25am PDT

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My sincere gratitude to President Muhammadu Buhari for the kind gesture of this congratulatory message… Highest regards to The President and Commander-in-Chief… STATE HOUSE PRESS RELEASE PRESIDENT BUHARI REJOICES WITH DELE MOMODU AT 60 President Muhammadu Buhari greets journalist/publisher, Ayobamidele Abayomi Ojútelégàn Àjàní Momodu, popularly known as Dele Momodu, on the occasion of his 60th birthday May 16, 2020. The President congratulates Momodu on hitting the milestone in good health and sound mind, wishing him greater contributions to the further emancipation of Nigeria in the years and decades to come. President Buhari rejoices with the family, friends and professional colleagues of the Publisher of Ovation International, saying he has left his footprints indelibly in the annals of journalism in the country. He wishes Momodu greater profundity of thoughts as he engages with readers of his weekly column, PENdulum. Femi Adesina Special Adviser to the President Media and Publicity
A post shared by CHIEF DR DELE MOMODU (@delemomoduovation) on May 15, 2020 at 1:56pm PDT

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Thank you Sir for this extraordinary honour, PROFESSOR YEMI OSINBAJO…
A post shared by CHIEF DR DELE MOMODU (@delemomoduovation) on May 15, 2020 at 4:16pm PDT

There were also messages from former president of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama, and the Vice President of Liberia, Jewel Howard-Taylor.

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To say I love and adore the former President of Ghana JOHN DRAMANI MAHAMA is an understatement. I’m very grateful for this honor…
A post shared by CHIEF DR DELE MOMODU (@delemomoduovation) on May 15, 2020 at 6:24pm PDT

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DR JEWEL HOWARD-TAYLOR is one of the closest friends I have kept for about two decades. You will know why after watching this moving tribute. Your Excellency, I’m truly humbled by your generous words…
A post shared by CHIEF DR DELE MOMODU (@delemomoduovation) on May 15, 2020 at 6:31pm PDT

TY Bello, Rotimi Amaechi, and Segun Odegbami also sent their felicitations and good wishes.

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A post shared by CHIEF DR DELE MOMODU (@delemomoduovation) on May 15, 2020 at 8:43pm PDT

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A post shared by CHIEF DR DELE MOMODU (@delemomoduovation) on May 15, 2020 at 9:48pm PDT

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I doff my hat eternally to the football prowess of UNCLE SEGUN ODEGBAMI my favorite striker from way back… Thanks Sir for this great honour…
A post shared by CHIEF DR DELE MOMODU (@delemomoduovation) on May 15, 2020 at 9:57pm PDT

After all the well wishes, Dele Momodu settled with his family in their home to take photos and cut a birthday cake. See photos from the quiet celebration:

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Buhari speaks on high rate of deaths in Kano

President Muhammadu Buhari has assured that his government is with the people of Kano and will not let them down.

He said this in reaction to the coronavirus pandemic crisis and the recent deaths in the state.

Buhari’s spokesman, Garba Shehu, in a statement on Wednesday noted that there is a global shortage of personal protective equipment.

He listed others not readily available as testing kits and other medical devices.

The presidency observed that in every country, there are some cities and regions more severely affected than others.

“In Nigeria, there are currently verbal autopsies underway in Kano State to identify the precise cause of the sudden and rapid increase in mortality in recent days”, the statement read.

“While some may wish to believe that there are other causes at play here like hypertension, diabetes, meningitis, and acute malaria’, there are others who say it is COVID-19. We should be prepared to accept the medical and scientific result of the autopsies and work together to confront the common enemy.”

The presidency added that globally, communities with similar socioeconomic dynamics like Kano have found it very helpful, the sort of lockdown measures now imposed, with markets and other public places of worship shuttered more strictly.

“If there is reason to believe that the mortality rate in Kano due to COVID-19 is out of control, it will spell a serious development to which the best action would be for the Federal government and state government to work more tightly together to find solutions and implement them together.”

The statement urged current or former holders of office from Kano and other states in Nigeria to be united.

It added that there is no time to talk and that the common purpose should be to preserve the lives and health of citizens.

COVID-19: Buhari bans inter-state travels

As part of new measures to curtail the spread of COVID19, President Muhammadu Buhari, on Monday, announced restriction of inter-state pasanger travels.

This is coming after 28 days of federal government lockdown order in Federal Capital Territory, Lagos and Ogun States.

The President in his broadcast announced the easing of the lockdown, with effect from May 4.

He, however, introduced new sets of measures, which include night curfew.

He said, “There will be a ban on non-essential inter-state passenger travels until further notice.”

“There will be partial and controlled interstate movement of goods and services will be allowed from producers to consumers.”

Adding that “There will be an overnight curfew from 8pm to 6am. This means all movements are will be prohibited during this period except essential services.”

Recall that the Nigeria Governors Forum had advised President Muhammadu Buhari, to stop inter-state movements.

President Buhari orders Gradual Ease of Lockdown in Lagos, Ogun & FCT with Compulsory Curfew | Read Full Statement

After one full month of total lockdown in Lagos State, Ogun State, and FCT, President Muhammadu Buhari has declared that the ongoing lockdown and restriction on movement will be gradually eased starting on May 2, 9 AM.
In the statement shared via President Buhari’s official Twitter, he commended Nigerians for the resilience and patriotism shown in the collective fight against the biggest health challenge of our generation.
The president also ordered the imposition of 8.00 p.m. to 6.00 am curfew in those places while also saying that selected businesses and offices can open from 9.00 a.m. to 6.00 p.m.
Read his full statement below:
ADDRESS BY H.E. MUHAMMADU BUHARI,
PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA ON THE CUMULATIVE LOCKDOWN ORDER OF LAGOS AND OGUN STATES AS WELL AS THE FEDERAL CAPITAL TERRITORY ON COVID- 19 PANDEMIC
AT THE STATE HOUSE, ABUJA
MONDAY, 27th APRIL, 2020
1. Fellow Nigerians
2. I will start by commending you all for the resilience and patriotism that you have shown in our collective fight against the biggest health challenge of our generation.
3. As of yesterday, 26th April 2020, some three million confirmed cases of COVID nineteen have been recorded globally with about nine hundred thousand recoveries. Unfortunately, some two hundred thousand people have also died passed away as a result of this pandemic.
4. The health systems and economies of many nations continue to struggle as a result of the coronavirus pandemic.
5. Nigeria continues to adopt and adapt to these new global realities on a daily basis. This evening, I will present the facts as they are and explain our plans for the coming month knowing fully aware that some key variables and assumptions may change in the coming days or weeks.
6. Exactly two weeks ago, there were three hundred and twenty-three confirmed cases in 20 states and the Federal Capital Territory.
7. As of this morning, Nigeria has recorded one thousand two hundred and seventy-three cases across 32 States and the FCT. Unfortunately, these cases includes 40 deaths fatalities.
8. I will use using this opportunity to express our deepest condolences to the families of all Nigerians that have lost their lives loved ones as a result of the COVID nineteen Pandemic. This is our collective loss and we share in your grief.
9. Initial models predicted that Nigeria will record an estimated two thousand confirmed cases in the first month after the index case.
10. This means that despite the drastic increase in the number of confirmed cases recorded in the past two weeks, the measures we have put in place thus far have yielded positive outcomes against the projections.
11. The proportion of cases imported from other countries has reduced to only 19% of new cases, showing that our border closures yielded positive results. These are mostly fellow Nigerians returning through our land borders. We will continue to enforce land border arrival protocols as part of the containment strategy.
12. Today, the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has accredited 15 laboratories across the country with an aggregate capacity to undertake 2,500 tests per day across the country.
13. Based on your feedback, Lagos the State Government, and the FCT with support from NCDC is have established several sample collection centers in Lagos and the FCT. They are also reviewing their laboratory testing strategy to further increase the number of tests they can perform including the accreditation of selected private laboratories that meet the accreditation criteria.
14. Several new fully equipped treatment and isolation centers have been operationalized across the country thereby increasing bed capacity to about three thousand. At this point, I will commend the State Governors for the activation of State-level Emergency Operation Centres, the establishment of new treatment centers, and the delivery of aggressive risk communication strategies.
15. Over ten thousand healthcare workers have been trained. For their protection, additional personal protective equipment has been distributed to all the states. Although we have experienced logistical challenges, we remain committed to establishing a solid supply chain process to ensure these heroic professionals are can work safely and are properly equipped.
16. In keeping with our Government’s promise to improve the welfare of healthcare workers, we have signed a memorandum of understanding on the provision of hazard allowances and other incentives with key health sector professional associations. We have also procured insurance cover for five thousand frontline health workers. At this point, I must commend the insurance sector for their support in achieving this within a short period of time.
17. Nigeria has also continued to receive support from the international community, multilateral agencies, the private sector, and public-spirited individuals. This support has ensured that critical lifesaving equipment and materials, which have become scarce globally, are available for Nigeria through original equipment manufacturers and government-to-government processes.
18. The distribution and expansion of palliatives which I directed in my earlier broadcast are still ongoing in a transparent manner. I am mindful of the seeming frustration being faced by expectant citizens. I urge all potential beneficiaries to exercise patience as we continue to fine-tune our logistical and distribution processes working with the State Governments.
18.19. I have directed the Central Bank of Nigeria and other financial institutions to make further plans and provisions for financial stimulus packages for small and medium scale enterprises. We recognize the critical role that they play in Nigeria’s economy.
19.20. Our Security Agencies continue to rise to the challenge posed by this unusual situation. While we feel deeply concerned about isolated security incidents involving hoodlums and miscreants, I want to assure all Nigerians that your safety and security remain our primary concern, especially in these exceedingly difficult and uncertain times. As we focus on protecting lives and properties, we will not tolerate any human rights abuses by our security agencies. The few reported incidences are regrettable, and I want to assure you that the culprits will be brought to justice.
20. I urge all Nigerians to continue to cooperate and show understanding whenever they encounter security agents. Furthermore, for their protection, I have instructed the personnel of the security agencies to be provided with the necessary personal protective equipment for their own protection.
21. As we continue to streamline our response in the epicenters of Lagos and the FCT, I remain am concerned about the unfortunate developments in Kano in recent days. Although an in-depth investigation is still ongoing, we have decided to deploy additional Federal Government human, material, and technical resources to strengthen and support the State Government’s efforts. We will commence implementation immediately.
22. In Kano, and indeed many other States that are recording new cases, preliminary findings show that such cases are mostly from interstate travel and emerging community transmission.
23. Drawing from these, I implore all Nigerians to continue to adhere strictly to the advisories published by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control. These include regular hand washing, social physical distancing, wearing of face masks/coverings in public, avoidance of non-essential movement and travels, and avoidance of large gatherings remain paramount.
24. Fellow Nigerians, for the past four weeks, most parts of our country have been under either the Federal Government or State Government lockdowns. As I mentioned earlier, these steps were necessary and overall, have contributed to slowing down the spread of COVID nineteen in Nigeria.
25. However, such lockdowns have also come at a very heavy economic cost. Many of our citizens have lost their means of livelihood. Many businesses have also shut down. No country can afford the full impact of a sustained lockdown while awaiting the development of vaccines or cures.
26. In my last address, I mentioned the Federal Government will develop strategies and policies that will protect lives while preserving livelihoods.
27. In these two weeks, the Federal and State Governments have jointly and collaboratively worked hard on this how to balance the need to protect health while also preserving livelihoods, leveraging global best practice while keeping in mind our peculiar circumstances.
28. We looked assessed how our factories, markets, traders, and transporters can continue to function while at the same time respecting adhering to the NCDC guidelines on hygiene and social distancing.
29. We assessed how our children can continue to learn without compromising their health.
30. We reviewed how our farmers can safely plant and harvest in this rainy season to ensure our food security is not compromised. Furthermore, we also discussed how to safely transport food items from rural production areas to industrial processing zones and ultimately, to the key consumption centers.
31. Our goal was to develop implementable policies that will ensure our economy continues to function while still maintaining our aggressive response to the COVID nineteen pandemic. These same difficult decisions are being faced by leaders around the world.
32. Based on the above and in line with the recommendations of the Presidential Task Force on COVID nineteen, the various Federal Government committees that have reviewed socio-economic matters and the Nigeria Governors Forum, I have approved for a phased and gradual easing of lockdown measures in FCT, Lagos and Ogun States effective from Saturday, 2nd May 2020 at 9 am.
33. However, this will be followed strictly with aggressive reinforcement of testing and contact tracing measures while allowing the restoration of some economic and business activities in certain sectors.
34. The highlights of the new nationwide measures are as follows;
a. Selected businesses and offices can open from 9 am to 6 pm;
b. There will be an overnight curfew from 8 pm to 6 am. This means all movements are will be prohibited during this period except essential services;
c. There will be a ban on non-essential inter-state passenger travels until further notice;
d. There will be Partial and controlled interstate movement of goods and services will be allowed to allow for the movement of goods and services from producers to consumers, and
e. We will strictly ensure the mandatory use of face masks or coverings in public in addition to maintaining physical distancing and personal hygiene. Furthermore, the restrictions on social and religious gathers shall remain in place. State Governments, corporate organizations, and philanthropists are encouraged to support the production of cloth masks for citizens.
35. For the avoidance of doubt, the lockdown in the FCT, Lagos & Ogun States shall subsist remain in place until these new ones come into effect on Saturday, 2nd May 2020 at 9 am.
36. The Presidential Task Force shall provide sector-specific details and timing guidelines to allow for preparations by Governments, businesses, and institutions.
37. The above are guidelines. State Governors may choose to amend adapt and expand based on their unique circumstances provided they maintain alignment with the guidelines issued above on public health and hygiene.
38.  These revised guidelines do not apply to Kano State. The total lockdown recently announced by the State Government shall remain enforced be enforced for the full duration. The Federal Government shall deploy all the necessary human, material, and technical resources to support the State in controlling and containing the pandemic.
39. I wish to once again commend the frontline workers across the country who, on a daily basis, risk everything to ensure we win this fight. For those who got infected in the line of duty, be rest assured that Government will do all it takes to support you and your families during this exceedingly difficult period. I will also take this opportunity to assure you all that your safety, wellbeing, and welfare remains paramount to our Government.
40. I will also recognize the support we have received from our traditional rulers, the Christian Association of Nigeria, the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs, and other prominent religious and community leaders. Your cooperation and support have significantly contributed to the successes we have recorded to date. I will urge you all to please continue to create awareness on the seriousness of coronavirus among your worshippers and communities while appealing that they strictly comply with public health advisories.
41. I will also thank the Nigeria Governors’ Forum and the Presidential Task Force for all their hard work to date. Through this collaboration, I remain confident that success is achievable.
42. I also wish to thank corporate organizations, philanthropists, the UN family, the European Union, friendly nations, the media, and other partners that have taken up the responsibility of supporting our response.
43. And finally, I will thank all Nigerians again for your patience and cooperation during this difficult and challenging period. I assure you that the government shall continue to take all necessary measures to protect the lives and livelihoods of our citizens and residents.
44. I thank you for listening and may God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria
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Read President Muhammadu Buhari’s Farewell Note to his Loyal & Dearest Friend, Abba Kyari

President Muhammadu Buhari is still in a state of grief after losing his dearest friend of 42 years, Abba Kyari, who was also the Chief of Staff, on Friday to coronavirus.
In a heartfelt letter shared via Buhari’s personal Twitter page, the president paid tribute to Kyari, calling him a true patriot and loyal friend, who never sought elective office for himself.
Buhari said he met Kyari when he was in his twenties, adding that they were friends for 42 years.
Read the full statement:
TO MY FRIEND, MALLAM ABBA KYARI
Mallam Abba Kyari, who died on 17th April, 2020, at the age of 67 from complications caused by the Coronavirus, was a true Nigerian patriot. My loyal friend and compatriot for the last 42 years – and latterly my Chief-of-Staff – he never wavered in his commitment to the betterment of every one of us.
He was only in his twenties when we first met. A diligent student, soon after he was blessed with the opportunity to study abroad – first at Warwick and then law at the University of Cambridge. But there was never any question Abba would bring his first-rate skills and newly acquired world-class knowledge back to Nigeria – which he did – immediately upon graduation.
Whilst possessing the sharpest legal and organisational mind, Abba’s true focus was always the development of infrastructure and the assurance of security for the people of this nation he served so faithfully. For he knew that without both in tandem there can never be the development of the respectful society and vibrant economy that all Nigerian citizens deserve.
In political life, Abba never sought elective office for himself. Rather, he set himself against the view and conduct of two generations of Nigeria’s political establishment – who saw corruption as an entitlement and its practice a byproduct of possessing political office.
Becoming my Chief of Staff in 2015, he strove quietly and without any interest in publicity or personal gain to implement my agenda.
There are those who said of him that he must be secretive – because he did not have a high public profile. But Abba was the opposite: he simply had no need, nor did he seek, the cheap gratification of the crowd; for him, there was nothing to be found in popular adulation. He secured instead satisfaction and his reward solely and only from the improvement of the governance of this great country.
Working, without fail, seven days each and every week, he acted forcefully as a crucial gatekeeper to the presidency, ensuring no one – whether minister or governor had access beyond another – and that all those representing and serving our country were treated equally.
He made clear in his person and his practice, always, that every Nigerian – regardless of faith, family, fortune or frailty – was heard and treated respectfully and the same.
Mallam Abba Kyari was the very best of us. He was made of the stuff that makes Nigeria great. Rest In Peace, my dearest friend.
To his loving wife and doting family who survive him, I extend my heartfelt sorrow at your loss.
Muhammadu Buhari
President, Federal Republic of Nigeria
April 18, 2020
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COVID-19 Lockdown Extended: Full Text Of President Buhari’s Live Broadcast

ADDRESS BY H.E. MUHAMMADU BUHARI, PRESIDENT OF THE FEDERAL REPUBLIC OF NIGERIA ON THE EXTENSION OF COVID- 19 PANDEMIC LOCKDOWN AT THE STATE HOUSE, ABUJA
MONDAY, 13TH APRIL, 2020
1. Fellow Nigerians
2. In my address on Sunday, 29th March, 2020, I asked the residents of Lagos and Ogun States as well as the Federal Capital Territory to stay at home for an initial period of fourteen days starting from Monday, 30th March 2020.
3. Many State Governments also introduced similar restrictions.
4. As your democratically elected leaders, we made this very difficult decision knowing fully well it will severely disrupt your livelihoods and bring undue hardship to you, your loved ones and your communities.
5. However, such sacrifices are needed to limit the spread of COVID-19 in our country. They were necessary to save lives.
6. Our objective was, and still remains, to contain the spread of the Coronavirus and to provide space, time and resources for an aggressive and collective action.
7. The level of compliance to the COVID-19 guidelines issued has been generally good across the country. I wish to thank you all most sincerely for the great sacrifice you are making for each other at this critical time.
8. I will take this opportunity to recognise the massive support from our traditional rulers, the Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) and the Nigerian Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) during this pandemic.
9. I also acknowledge the support and contributions received from public spirited individuals, the business community and our international partners and friends.
10. I must also thank the media houses, celebrities and other public figures for the great work they are doing in sensitizing our citizens on hygienic practices, social distancing and issues associated with social gatherings.
11. As a result of the overwhelming support and cooperation received, we were able to achieve a lot during these 14 days of initial lockdown.
12. We implemented comprehensive public health measures that intensified our case identification, testing, isolation and contact tracing capabilities.
13. To date, we have identified 92% of all identified contacts while doubling the number of testing laboratories in the country and raising our testing capacity to 1,500 tests per day.
14. We also trained over 7,000 Healthcare workers on infection prevention and control while deploying NCDC teams to 19 states of the federation.
15. Lagos and Abuja today have the capacity to admit some 1,000 patients each across several treatment centres.
16. Many State Governments have also made provisions for isolation wards and treatment centres. We will also build similar centers near our airports and land borders.
17. Using our resources and those provided through donations, we will adequately equip and man these centres in the coming weeks. Already, health care workers across all the treatment centers have been provided with the personal protective equipment that they need to safely carry out the care they provide.
18. Our hope and prayers are that we do not have to use all these centres. But we will be ready for all eventualities.
19. At this point, I must recognise the incredible work being done by our healthcare workers and volunteers across the country especially in frontline areas of Lagos and Ogun States as well as the Federal Capital Territory.
20. You are our heroes and as a nation, we will forever remain grateful for your sacrifice during this very difficult time. More measures to motivate our health care workers are being introduced which we will announce in the coming weeks.
21. As a nation, we are on the right track to win the fight against COVID-19.
22. However, I remain concerned about the increase in number of confirmed cases and deaths being reported across the world and in Nigeria specifically.
23. On 30th March 2020, when we started our lockdown in conforming with medical and scientific advice, the total number of confirmed cases across the world was over 780,000.
24. Yesterday, the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases globally was over one million, eight hundred and fifty thousand. This figure is more than double in two weeks!
25. In the last fourteen days alone, over 70,000 people have died due to this disease.
26. In the same period, we have seen the health system of even the most developed nations being overwhelmed by this virus.
27. Here in Nigeria, we had 131 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in 12 States on 30th March 2020. We had two fatalities then.
28. This morning, Nigeria had 323 confirmed cases in twenty States. Unfortunately we now have ten fatalities. Lagos State remains the center and accounts for 54% of the confirmed cases in Nigeria. When combined with the FCT, the two locations represent over 71% of the confirmed cases in Nigeria.
29. Most of our efforts will continue to focus in these two locations.
30. Majority of the confirmed cases in Lagos and the FCT are individuals with recent international travel history or those that came into contact with returnees from international trips.
31. By closing our airports and land borders and putting strict conditions for seaport activities, we have reduced the impact of external factors on our country. However, the increase in the number of States with positive cases is alarming.
32. The National Centre for Disease Control has informed me that, a large proportion of new infections are now occurring in our communities, through person-to-person contacts. So we must pay attention to the danger of close contact between person to person.
33. At this point, I will remind all Nigerians to continue to take responsibility for the recommended measures to prevent transmission, including maintaining physical distancing, good personal hygiene and staying at home.
34. In addition, I have signed the Quarantine Order in this regard and additional regulations to provide clarity in respect of the control measures for the COVID-19 pandemic which will be released soon.
35. The public health response to COVID-19 is built on our ability to detect, test and admit cases as well as trace all their contacts. While I note some appreciable progress, we can achieve a lot more.
36. Today, the cessation of movement, physical distancing measures and the prohibition of mass gatherings remain the most efficient and effective way of reducing the transmission of the virus. By sustaining these measures, combined with extensive testing and contact tracing, we can take control and limit the spread of the disease.
37. Our approach to the virus remains in 2 steps – First, to protect the lives of our fellow Nigerians and residents living here and second, to preserve the livelihoods of workers and business owners.
38. With this in mind and having carefully considered the briefings and Report from the Presidential Task Force and the various options offered, it has become necessary to extend the current restriction of movement in Lagos and Ogun States as well as the FCT for another 14 days effective from 11:59 pm on Monday, 13th of April, 2020. I am therefore once again asking you all to work with Government in this fight.
39. This is not a joke. It is a matter of life and death. Mosques in Makkah and Madina have been closed. The Pope celebrated Mass on an empty St. Peter’s Square. The famous Notre Dame cathedral in Paris held Easter Mass with less than 10 people. India, Italy and France are in complete lockdown. Other countries are in the process of following suit. We cannot be lax.
40. The previously issued guidelines on exempted services shall remain.
41. This is a difficult decision to take, but I am convinced that this is the right decision. The evidence is clear.
42. The repercussions of any premature end to the lockdown action are unimaginable.
43. We must not lose the gains achieved thus far. We must not allow a rapid increase in community transmission. We must endure a little longer.
44. I will therefore take this opportunity to urge you all to notify the relevant authorities if you or your loved ones develop any symptoms. I will also ask our health care professionals to redouble their efforts to identify all suspected cases, bring them into care and prevent transmission to others.
45. No country can afford the full impact of a sustained restriction of movement on its economy. I am fully aware of the great difficulties experienced especially by those who earn a daily wage such as traders, day-workers, artisans and manual workers.
46. For this group, their sustenance depends on their ability to go out. Their livelihoods depend on them mingling with others and about seeking work. But despite these realities we must not change the restrictions.
47. In the past two weeks, we announced palliative measures such as food distribution, cash transfers and loans repayment waivers to ease the pains of our restrictive policies during this difficult time. These palliatives will be sustained.
48. I have also directed that the current social register be expanded from 2.6 million households to 3.6 million households in the next two weeks. This means we will support an additional one million homes with our social investment programs. A technical committee is working on this and will submit a report to me by the end of this week.
49. The Security Agencies have risen to the challenges posed by this unprecedented situation with gallantry and I commend them. I urge them to continue to maintain utmost vigilance, firmness as well as restraint in enforcing the restriction orders while not neglecting statutory security responsibilities.
50. Fellow Nigerians, follow the instructions on social distancing. The irresponsibility of the few can lead to the death of the many. Your freedom ends where other people’s rights begin.
51. The response of our State Governors has been particularly impressive, especially in aligning their policies and actions to those of the Federal Government.
52. In the coming weeks, I want to assure you that the Federal Government, through the Presidential Task Force, will do whatever it takes to support you in this very difficult period. I have no doubt that, by working together and carefully following the rules, we shall get over this pandemic.
53. I must also thank the Legislative arm of Government for all its support and donations in this very difficult period. This collaboration is critical to the short and long-term success of all the measures that we have instituted in response to the pandemic.
54. As a result of this pandemic, the world as we know it has changed. The way we interact with each other, conduct our businesses and trade, travel, educate our children and earn our livelihoods will be different.
55. To ensure our economy adapts to this new reality, I am directing the Ministers of Industry, Trade and Investment, Communication and Digital Economy, Science and Technology, Transportation, Aviation, Interior, Health, Works and Housing, Labour and Employment and Education to jointly develop a comprehensive policy for a “Nigerian economy functioning with COVID-19”.
56. The Ministers will be supported by the Presidential Economic Advisory Council and Economic Sustainability Committee in executing this mandate.
57. I am also directing the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development, the National Security Adviser, the Vice Chairman, National Food Security Council and the Chairman, Presidential Fertiliser Initiative to work with the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 to ensure the impact of this pandemic on our 2020 farming season is minimized.
58. Finally, I want to thank the members of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 for all their hard work so far. Indeed, the patriotism shown in your work is exemplary and highly commendable.
59. Fellow Nigerians, I have no doubt that by working together and carefully following the rules, we shall get over this pandemic and emerge stronger in the end.
60. I thank you all for listening and may God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.

Restriction on Movement will Last as Long As Necessary – Read President Buhari’s Statement

President Muhammadu Buhari has declared that the ongoing lockdown and restriction on movement, will last as long as scientific advisers declare they are necessary.
In the statement shared via the personal Twitter page of President Buhari, he thanked Nigerians for their patience and sacrifice made during this stay at home period. He also stated that the lockdown is a major attempt to halt and defeat the spread of coronavirus in the country.
Read the full statement below:
I wholeheartedly thank all Nigerians for your patience, resolve and strong determination to defeat the COVID-19 outbreak.
We realize that today, there will be sons and daughters unable to visit their parents, and elders that are isolated from young ones. And there will be those who live day-to-day, eating as they earn, and who face real and present suffering.
No elected government could ask more of the citizens of the country that elected them than what we ask of you today.
But we must ask you – once more – to observe restrictions on movement where they are in place, and follow the instructions of our scientists and medical advisers: stay home, wash your hands, save lives.
The freedoms we ask you to willingly forsake today will only last as long as our scientific advisers declare they are necessary. But they are essential – the world over – to halt and defeat the spread of this virus.
For those who suffer most egregiously, the Government has announced multiple measures to assist: 70,000 tonnes of grain is being released from the National Strategic Grain Reserves for distribution to those in most need; distribution of small cash payments is also being made, and will continue to be made by the Federal Government, in the States and Local Government Areas.
We ask you to listen and follow public announcements via the mass media for instructions as to how to receive this government support – and learn of more public assistance in the coming days.
All that the Government is asking you to endure is because nowhere in the world today is there any known way of defeating this pandemic. There is no vaccine.
And that means there are choices to be made: between continuing as usual, or accepting the restrictions even when they come with unintended consequences.
But at this darkest hour, it remains our duty to offer you the full and unvarnished truth: This is a global pandemic. 210 countries and territories across the globe are affected. We cannot expect others to come to our assistance. No one is coming to defeat this virus for us.
Instead, the defeat of the virus in our country will be in our hands, alone. We cannot wait for others. We can only depend on ourselves now. And so we must – and we will – end this outbreak ourselves, as Nigerians, together.
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Boko Haram: Buhari, Zulum meet over Chadian offensive, Borno Gov gives details

President Muhammadu Buhari on Thursday met with Governor Babagana Zulum of Borno at the State House, Abuja.

Zulum spoke to State House Correspondents after the meeting.

He disclosed that his visit was on the recent military action against Boko Haram by Chadian soldiers on the shores of Lake Chad.

Zulum said the government promised to take more decisive and proactive measures towards ensuring that Boko Haram is totally eliminated for sustainable peace and development.

”After critically analyzing the situation, we both expressed the belief that time has come to once and for all put to an end the senseless acts of terror by Boko Haram and other criminal elements operating in the region,” he disclosed

The Governor said he also briefed President Buhari on his administration’s efforts at containing the ravaging Coronavirus in the event it enters Borno State.

Borno has so far not recorded any case of coronavirus.