Friday, March 31, 2023

COVID-19: Udom extends lockdown by one week, inaugurates Special Courts for offenders

Akwa Ibom State Government said it has extended the total lockdown order of Governor Udom Emmanuel meant to elapse on Friday, 17 April by one week.

It added that a seven-hour respite, which starts from 6am to 1pm on Friday and Saturday respectively, would be given to the people to enable them restock foodstuffs and any prescribed medications.

The Secretary to the State Government and Chairman COVID-19 Committee, Dr. Emmanuel Ekuwem, who disclosed this in a statement, said the seven-hour window was borne out of Gov. Emmanuel’s empathy towards the peoples’ plights and discomfort occasioned by COVID-19 pandemic.

He urged the people to always maintain the precautionary measures earlier stipulated, noting that the State Government will continue to monitor and review the COVID-19 situation globally, nationally and even at the state level.

The statement reads, “The lockdown is extended by 1 week ONLY. The lockdown be responsibly and carefully lifted on Friday 17 and Saturday 18 April, 2020 from 6am to 1pm of each day to enable Akwa Ibomites re-stock foodstuffs and any prescribed medications.

“Lockdown will be enforced after 1pm on Friday 17 and Saturday 18 April, 2020. All preventive measures earlier announced by the Akwa Ibom State Government COVID-19 medical management team remain in force during and after the 7 hour RESPITE on Friday 17 and Saturday 18 April, 2020. Lockdown enforcement includes Jumat services on Friday 17 April and Church services on Sunday 19 April, 2020.

”Akwa Ibom State Government will continue to monitor and review the COVID-19 situation globally and nationally in general and in our state in particular so as to respond speedily and appropriately to protect the health of our citizens.”

Similarly, a special court for the trial of offenders of quarantine and restriction of movement regulations, 2020 was also inaugurated earlier today.

The State Chief Judge, Justice Godwin Abraham, who disclosed this during the inauguration, said the court would be replicated in the three senatorial districts of the state.

He said, “Courts in Akwa Ibom State are not sitting due to COVID-19 pandemic. For government to be able to enforce quarantine and restriction of movement regulations, 2020, Special Courts had to be inaugurated for the special assignment.”

Speaking on the development, Attorney General and Commissioner for Justice, Barr. Uwemedimo Nwoko, said that the court was necessary to avoid unlawfulness.

He urged Akwa Ibom people to stay at home for the period the quarantine and restriction would last.

Meanwhile, the law stipulates that defaulting individuals are to pay 10,000 Naira fine and community service for 7 days.

Impounded tricycles or motorbikes, Cars, trucks are to pay 7,000, 20,000 and 50,000 Naira respectively, upon being found guilty.

The law also stipulates 7 days community service in addition to fines.

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