The Delta State government has partially lifted the ban on movements within the state with effect from Thursday, April 30, 2020.

The state governor, Dr Ifeanyi Okowa who announced this on Tuesday during his broadcast to the people, said the decision became necessary to enable the people engage in economic/business activities between the hours of 6am and 7pm.

Security agencies the governor emphasized will be on hand to ensure strict compliance with the time frame.

The governor gave the following exceptions:

  1. Conferences, sporting activities, gathering of people in convention/event centres, sports fields, public/open spaces, as well as recreational and cultural/communal activities remain banned until 31st May 2020.
  2. Burials and weddings will be allowed, the social distancing rule (6ft apart) must be applied, and the number of guests/persons must not exceed 50.
  3. Our schools (public and private) remain closed until Sunday, 31st May 2020.
  4. Entertainment centres, including cinemas, bars and night clubs remain closed until Sunday, 31st May 2020.
  5. Restaurants/Canteens/Beer Parlours are to operate on take-away basis while hotels will be allowed to open (with in-room dining) but their restaurants, bars and night clubs remain closed till further notice.
  6. Transport services (keke, taxis, buses) are allowed to operate, number of passengers shall be as follows: -– 2 persons at the back for keke; one person at the front seat and two persons at the back for a taxi; 10-12 persons for a 16-seater/18-seater bus.
  7. Our airports remain closed to passenger traffic till further notice.

Speaking further, Dr Okowa said, “I shall be meeting with our religious leaders on THURSDAY, 30TH APRIL 2020 to chart the way forward for our places of worship. However, all crusades/conventions remain banned till further notice.

“For the public service, only workers on Grade Level 12 and above should resume work effective THURSDAY, 30TH APRIL 2020. This order does not apply to junior staff on essential/emergency duties.

“Workers with comorbities identified by the ministry of Health or its agencies can work from home. However, workplace protocols should be in place for disease surveillance/prevention, including screening, use of facemasks and social distancing.

“Let me reiterate that security agencies have been advised to ensure strict compliance with the above directives. Violators will be prosecuted, without fear or favour,” he warned.

The governor also said that, “Henceforth, it is mandatory for all residents in the State to make use of facemasks in the public. Anybody leaving his/her home must wear a facemask effective THURSDAY 30TH APRIL 2020 till further notice. They must be worn in public places including offices, markets, malls, supermarkets, salons, hospitals and health clinics, churches, mosques, as well as all approved gatherings of persons.

“Traders/market women are all required to wear facemasks while carrying out their businesses. The Local Government Chairmen are hereby directed to work out the modalities for the operations of the markets in their domain, especially with regards to social distancing and other sanitation protocols.

“Hair dressing/barbing Salons MUST NEVER BE CROWDED; owners are hereby directed to restrict the number of persons inside to a minimum number that will facilitate appropriate social distancing. As much as possible, workers in these establishments should wear hand gloves.

“The State Government will by tomorrow commence, in the first instance, the distribution of A MILLION CLOTH FACEMASKS to residents in the State, using the Local Government offices as channels. Meanwhile, those who can afford it are also advised to make their own procurements. The benefit of the cloth facemasks is that they can be washed and reused.

“There will be a continuation of the inter-state lockdown for another two weeks. Only essential supplies – food, beverages, medicals, pharmaceuticals, petroleum and agricultural products – are exempted from this order.”