COVID-19: Nigerian govt clears air on people exempted from curfew

The Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Boss Mustapha, has warned security officials that journalists are exempted from the nationwide curfew imposed by President Muhammadu Buhari.

There have been reported cases of journalists clashing with policemen and other law enforcement agents over whether they are allowed to move around from 8pm.

But Mustapha, who is also the chairman of the Presidential Task Force (PTF) on COVID-19, made it clear that the media is part of essential services.

At PTF’s daily briefing on Wednesday, he highlighted the role of journalists, making it clear that Buhari categorised journalists among those who could move freely.

“Journalists are part of the essential service. Because, whatever we do here, if you don’t report it, then the news item will not get out to the population.

“We will look at the issue that happened in Lagos; the Minister of Information will take that up,” he said.

On medical professionals facing similar challenges, Mustapha said: “We will look at that. If it is the release of the protocol that did not consider that I believe that the national coordinator, who has the primary responsibility of dealing with that, would take a look at it and see how best to handle it.”

The curfew Buhari imposed from Monday, May 4 is from 8pm to 6am.

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