Juliana Taiwo-Obalonye, Abuja
Director–General of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Chikwe Ihekweazu, has charged Nigerians to wear face masks as precautionary measures in curbing the spread of COVID-19 saying it is better than being on ventilator.
Speaking during a briefing of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, he noted that most Nigerians complained that using face masks is stressful.
“Wearing a mask may seem very cumbersome but I promise you that it is less cumbersome than being on a ventilator. Over the last few weeks, many of you may have heard stories of survivors but there are many stories that could have been told that you have not heard, stories of those that have passed away,” he said.
The NCDC boss also advised Nigerians on the need to take responsibility by ensuring that safety of their lives and those of their loved ones are preserved.
Similarly, Minister of Transportation, Rotimi Amaechi, has warned that passengers without face mask, 79 percent alcohol based hand sanitizer, will not be allowed to board the train.
He also said for the purpose of physical distancing, the number of passengers coaches that convey 88 passengers will now convey just 50 passengers.
According to him, he has seen a number of people die of COVID-19, hence he is dead scared.
“If you look you’ll see that I brought two items, – hand sanitizer and face mask. I carry this everywhere I go, the reason is – I have seen people die of COVID-19, so I’m dead scared.
“If you ask the last speaker (PTF Coordinator), I refused to agree that we should open the railways.
“It is the pressure of those who want to participate in the forthcoming spiritual activities that made me accept that we will open the railways from Abuja to Kaduna.
“What are our requirements? We don’t want to see how handsome you are or how beautiful you are, please wear a face mask, not a mouth mask. Nigerians wear mouth masks. If you do that, the train will stop and you will come down.”