COVID-19: Plateau Govt. enforces face mask use in public places

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The Plateau Government on Wednesday commenced strict enforcement of use of face mask by residents in public places in the Jos metropolis and environs.

The enforcement exercise is taking place largely on major road roundabouts in Jos where motorists are subjected to checks by heavy security personnel drafted to the various link roads.

A correspondent of News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) who monitored the exercise reports that motorists found not wearing the face masks are promptly pulled out of the slow moving traffic due to the checks.

NAN also reports that the checks also affected the early morning traffic in Jos, as it resulted in traffic congestion in areas while hawkers of the masks made brisk business.

Areas with concentration of security personnel included the Old Airport junction, Miango Junction and Low Cost Housing Estate junction.

NAN, however, reports that some residents lauded the exercise, saying it will help to control the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Mrs Julie Abaya, a resident of Zaramaganda in Jos South Local Government Area, said the checks would help to contain the spread of the disease, if residents complied with the directive.

“If people will comply to the use of face mask, it will reduce the spread of the disease as Coronavirus deals with the respiratory system.

“The problem is that when people pass where security officials are, they remove the face mask. We have to imbibe the culture of using it, even if no one is watching
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“I am happy security officials are ensuring compliance,” Abaya said.

Solomon Apochi, a 15- year-old student, said though he sometimes forgot putting on his face mask, he knew it was essential in preventing the transmission of the COVID-19.

“I am aware that I should use hand sanitiser, wash my hands with soap and water and observe physical distancing in the public to prevent being infected by Coronavirus,” Apochi said.

NAN reports that the Plateau government had announced that it would deploy top government officials and security agencies to enlighten the residents and enforce the use of the face mask in Jos North and Jos South local government areas.

The Commissioner for Information and communication, Mr Dan Manjang, said the action became imperative, following flouting of the directive on use of face mask in public places by some residents in the state and other preventive measure guidelines.

NAN further reports that officials of security agencies were enforcing the directive at the Old Airport roundabout, British America Junction and Zaramaganda Junction among other parts of the metropolis.

According to the National Center for Disease Control, Plateau currently has 253 cases of COVID-19.