Lagos State Government has raised the alarm of a possible third wave of Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, following a sharp increase in the number of positive cases recorded in the last few weeks.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu, on Sunday, imposed restrictions and sanctions, after disclosing that the State’s daily cases of COVID-19 confirmation had shot up to 6.6 per cent over a period of one week.
“The development may not be unconnected to the careless attitude of air passengers from countries in the “high risk” zones and the complacency by the residents to follow the protective protocols issued by the Government after the end of the second wave,” the governor said.
Sanwo-Olu disclosed that 18 percent of 50,322 air passengers of interest, who arrived in Lagos via the Murtala Mohammed International Airport (MMIA), could not be reached for COVID-19 status monitoring by EKOTELEMED because they supplied wrong contact details.
“Going forward,” the Governor “ordered sanctioning of in-bound air passengers that failed to provide verifiable contact details, including accessible phone numbers they can be reached for monitoring, while air passengers would face prosecution, including fines and imprisonment in line with the Lagos State Coronavirus Law of 2021.”
Meanwhile, following the situation at hand, Sanwo-Olu has ordered a reactivation of full compliance with all protective protocols already outlined by the State Government.
The Governor said there should be compulsory use of masks in all public places, while also directing social distancing, compulsory temperature checks, provisions for hand-washing and sanitizers, and maximum of 50 per cent occupancy in enclosed spaces.
Sanwo-Olu urged worship centres to be particularly vigilant, advising them not to be carried away by the illusion that all activities were back to normal.
The Governor also decried over the low vaccination rate in the State, pointing out that only a fraction of the populace received the recommended doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine being rolled out to achieve herd immunity.
“This,” he said, “is not adequate and the State Government was exploring all avenues possible to ramp up access to vaccine to reach the immunity target of 60 per cent coverage.”
Sanwo-Olu said Lagos State Government would continue to work with all partners across the Government and private institutions to ensure permanent isolation of the virus.