Nigeria’s President Muhammadu Buhari on Sunday ordered the “cessation of all movements” for two weeks in largest city Lagos to stop the spread of coronavirus.
“All citizens in these areas are to stay in their homes” starting from 2200 GMT on Monday, Buhari announced in a televised address to the nation.
“Travel to or from other states should be postponed. All businesses and offices within these locations should be fully closed during this period.”
Buhari said the restrictions – which also cover Abuja and Ogun state (neighbouring Lagos) – did not include hospitals, food shops and petrol stations.
“Although these establishments are exempted, access will be restricted and monitored,” he said.
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Nigeria, Africa’s most populous nation, has so far registered just 97 confirmed infections and one death from COVID-19, but testing has been limited.
Authorities in Lagos, a sprawling megacity of 20 million people, had already closed schools, shut non-food shops and restricted gatherings to limit movement. Hotels and other hospitality interests have also closed.
Enforcing a total lockdown will be a mammoth challenge for the authorities in a country where millions of people rely on their daily earnings to survive.