Coronavirus : FG not considering travel restrictions, says Mohammed

• Nigerian Embassy In Touch With 16 Nigerians In Wuhan City
•They Haven’t Indicated Interest To Return To Nigeria 

As cases and death toll from Coronavirus continue to rise, the Federal government yesterday said it is not considering imposing any travel restrictions but advised Nigerians that if it is not very essential to travel to South East China, they should not make such trips. 

Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed who stated this in an interview with journalists in Abuja, disclosed that the Nigerian Embassy in China has confirmed that there are 16 Nigerians in Wuhan city, Hubei Province of China, which is the epic center of the epidemic. 

He observed that the Embassy is in continuous touch with Nigerians in Wuhan adding that they have not indicated any intention to come home as they are in self-isolation and and will contact the embassy whenever there is need. He said: “What we can do is to give travel advisories that if it is not very essential to travel to South East China, they should not make such trips. But you know it is very difficult to ban people from traveling. What we can do is to let people who travel know that there is need for transparency and honesty when they are filling their forms. What we are dealing with is a virus that has no frontier that can be transmitted from human to human and the whole world is united in fighting the epidemic.” 

Mohammed noted that one of the reasons the WHO declared Coronavirus a global emergency was because it understands that it could be very expensive and that some countries may not afford it and it may help many countries and that many partners may also help many countries, adding: “Right now we are working together at an Inter-Ministerial level to be able to contain the epidemic.”

He said that there is need for increased Public enlightenment and advocacy on the need for Nigerians to take precautions stressing that the National Orientation Agency (NOA) would help take the information to the grassroots and appealed to the media to help sensitise Nigerians. 

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