The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 pandemic has joined well-meaning Nigerians and leaders in appealing to #ENDSARS protesters to sheath their swords and embrace dialogue.
The PTF also reminded the protesters that the virus is still virulent, deadly and dangerous.
The Secretary to the Government of the Federation and PTF Chairman, Mr Boss Mustapha, made the appeal Monday at the media briefing by the Task Force.
“It will not be out of place for the PTF to, in consideration of the foregoing, remind all Nigerians that we are in the middle of a global pandemic. The virus remains very virulent, deadly and dangerous. It is an unseen enemy which thrives when people lower their guard.
“While we use this medium to join other voices of reason, to appeal to the youths to harken to the invitation to dialogue, we also emphasize that non-compliance with the non-pharmaceutical measures are very risky adventures that must be avoided.
“We cannot afford to lose momentum and risk a second wave that might overwhelm our health systems.
“The PTF has on account of these developments, accelerated its plans for the National Testing Week and shall continue to monitor developments in all areas of the economy that have reopened and where new mass gathering events are taking place over the next three weeks for signs of spike in numbers.
“We urge every one who has been exposed unduly to large gathering to get tested and/or report any signs of the symptoms of COVID-19,” Mustapha told newsmen.
Mustapha reiterated the call to Nigerians to avoid traveling to nor receiving visitors from countries with high rate of infections cases.
He said: “The number of global infections, have crossed the 40 million mark while the United States of America has also crossed the 8 million mark. The global cases rose by a record 400,000 cases on October 16 with 43% of all the cases occurring in Europe (UK & France especially).
“The top five countries in new cases reported in the last 24 hours are India (55,511); USA (44,941); France (29,837); UK (16,982) and Russia (15,099). It is important to take precaution when planning to travel or receive travelers from these countries.”
On the implementation of the next phase of the national response to Coronavirus with effect from Monday, October 19, 2020, the SGF called for caution as civil servants on all grade levels have been asked to return to work for the first time since March.
“This also calls for caution, vigilance and effective preparation and leadership by Permanent Secretaries and CEOs of agencies of government.
“It is strongly advised that alternate days of attendance are worked out to avoid overcrowding in the various offices,” Mustapha said.