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Interstate Travel Ban, Senate President Ahmad Lawan Asks Security Agencies To ‘Sit Up’

Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, on Tuesday, asked security agencies to “sit up” and ensure total enforcement of President Muhammadu Buhari’s ban on interstate travel to curb the spread of Coronavirus (COVID-19) in the country.

Lawan made the call during Tuesday’s plenary of the upper legislative chamber.

The lawmakers at the Red Chamber had considered a motion on the “Need to enforce Presidential Order banning Interstate Movement” sponsored by Ike Ekweremadu, the Senator representing Enugu West district.

The Senate President said, “There is need for total enforcement on the ban on interstate travels.
Apparently, there is so much breach, and it appears like our security agencies who are supposed to enforce this, in most cases appear to look helpless. They need to sit up.

“This is a very serious health challenge to our country, but beyond interstate, even the observance of social distancing, hygiene and other protocols sometimes suffer inside the states.

“I think it is very important that citizens do this because it is for our sake. Government cannot be without citizens, and it is important at this point that we do this for our sake and that of our family members,” the Senate President appealed.

Meanwhile, Ekweremadu had lamented the spike in the number of COVID-19 cases in the country, which stands at 4,641 cases and 150 deaths according to figures released by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) on Monday night.

The former deputy senate president said the daily COVID-19 figures which are now in hundreds were alarming, adding that “the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 has raised alarm over what it described as increased level of interstate movement, worsened by the dubious concealment of people in food-carrying vehicles.”

He said, “the Nigeria Governors’ Forum has equally raised serious concerns over the way Nigerians crisscross the country in their numbers despite the subsisting order to the contrary.”

Ekweremadu stressed that in view of the breach of the presidential order, “the nation’s security agencies, particularly the police, have the responsibility to enforce law and order, including the presidential ban on interstate movement.”

The Senate subsequently resolved to call on the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, the Commandant-General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps and heads of all security agencies charged with enforcing the ban to investigate the alleged complicity of their officers in the alleged breach.

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