GOVERNOR Willie Obiano has shut down the Eke Awka market in the Anambra State capital in response to the growing number of coronavirus incidences brought about by the refusal of local to follow preventative guidelines.
Nigeria currently has 13,873 cases of coronavirus, of which there have been 382 fatalities and like most other nations, the government introduced a lockdown at the height of the pandemic. Over recent weeks, however, this lockdown has been eased but on the condition that residents observe several guidelines including wearing facemasks, observing a social distance of two metres and they regularly use hand sanitizers.
Largely unaffected, Anambra State has only had 46 cases of Covid-19, from which there has only been one fatality. To keep things this way, Governor Obiano introduced stringent measures, including regulations that facemasks should be worn in public and directions that hand washing basins be made available in places like markets and shopping malls.
Over the last week, Anambra Start has recorded 17 cases of Covid-19, with most of the affected from Awka, the state capital. In response to the surge, Governor Obiano has closed down the Eke Awka market and announced a 8pm to 6am curfew.
Professor Solomon Chukwulobelu, the secretary to the Anambra State government, said: “This is to inform the public that effective Monday, 15th June, 2020, Eke Awka Market, in Awka South Local Government will be shut down. This is as a result of non-compliance by the market traders and customers with Covid-19 protocols including wearing of protective face masks, provision of running water and soap for washing of hands, keeping of physical distancing, etc.
“Also, effective Monday, 15th June, 2020, a curfew in Awka South local government will be from 8pm to 6am daily, until further notice. These actions by the government are as a result of increased cases of Covid-19 in Awka South Local Government.
“The government is also putting other market leaders and local government councils in the state on notice that a similar curfew action will be taken and markets in the local government closed down if it is observed that such markets do not observe Covid-19 protocols.”