BAYELSA INDEX CASE: FOOD MARKET, BANKS, OTHERS EXEMPTED FROM STAY AT HOME ORDER

The Bayelsa State government has given clarification about those exempted from the stay-at-home directive of the governor, Senator Douye Diri.

Governor Diri in a state broadcast on Monday directed residents to stay at home for one-week except those rendering essential services and duties.

This followed a reported case by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) of a 49-year-old female that tested positive for the COVID-19 in the state.

The index case is on admission at the isolation centre of the Niger Delta University Teaching Hospital in Okolobiri.

The governor’s acting Chief Press Secretary, Mr. Daniel Alabrah, in a statement on Monday night, however, explained that banks, foodstuff sellers in markets and vehicles conveying foodstuff, supermarkets as well as petrol and gas stations were exempted from the stay-at-home directive.

Others are pharmaceuticals outlets, telecoms services operators, oil and gas services firms, medical and health personnel, civil servants on grade level 13 and above, and, of course, the military and other law enforcement personnel.

The governor’s aide stated that the clarification became necessary to reduce panic buying and to douse tension among residents.

He said the preventive measures taken before the report of an index case and even the fresh directive of the governor were all geared toward protecting the health of Bayelsans.

“These measures are not punitive. The government is on top of the situation and would take the right decisions to ensure the health and wellbeing of all citizens of the state are protected at all times. Therefore, there is no need for anyone to panic,” Alabrah said.

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