The Lagos state government has warned residents that failure to wear face masks in public could attract up to one year in prison.
The warning comes days after the presidential task force (PTF) on COVID-19 said there were indications that the country had entered a second wave of infections, considering the recent significant increase in the number of positive cases.
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“In Nigeria, the indication is that we have entered a second wave of infections, and we stand the risk of not just losing the gains from the hard work of the last nine months, but also losing the precious lives of our citizens,” Hadi Sirika, minister of aviation who represented Boss Mustapha, chairman of the PTF, said.
Babajide Sanwo-Olu, governor of the state, who is still in isolation after testing positive for COVID-19, said during the weekend that the state cannot afford another total lockdown amid the second wave of the COVID-19 pandemic.
He, however, advised residents to adhere to health protocols and non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) to limit the spread of the virus.
In a Twitter post on Tuesday, the government said those who breached the COVID-19 regulations risked prosecution under the infectious diseases regulations.
“Did you know? Failure to wear a face mask in public or breach of any COVID-19 regulations, you can be prosecuted under the Lagos State Infectious Diseases (Prevention) Regulations or Criminal Law of Lagos State and upon conviction liable to imprisonment up to one (1) year,” the post read.
Public Service Announcement@jidesanwoolu @drobafemihamzat @HMOKUNOLA1 @gbenga_omo @gboyegaakosile1 @Mr_JAGss #LagosAgainstCovid19 #CovidLASG #MaskUpLagos#TakeResponsibilityLagos #StaySafe#LASG #ForGreaterLagos pic.twitter.com/r6soc5kcWA
— The Lagos State Govt (@followlasg) December 22, 2020
As of December 21, 2020, Lagos, which is the epicentre of COVID-19, has confirmed 26,767 cases, out of which 24,096 recoveries and 237 deaths have been recorded.