The Ogun State Government has announced the closure of its borders with the neighbouring states and the international border with the Republic of Benin.
Governor Dapo Abiodun’s Chief Press Secretary, Kunle Somorin, announced this in a statement on Saturday.
Somorin revealed that the closure would be in effect from midnight of March 29, and would be in force for two weeks in the first instance.
“With this restriction order, movement in and out of the state is thus, banned as a further measure to contain the coronavirus pandemic,” the statement read.
According to the governor’s aide, the state is constrained to effect border closure in order to stem and flatten the curve of the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, not only in the state but in the country and in the West African sub-region.
“The position of Ogun State is peculiar. It not only shares an international border with the Republic of Benin, it does so with all other states in the South-West (except Ekiti), including Lagos State, which has understandably recorded the highest number of infections in the country largely because it hosts the busiest air and seaports and it is the nation’s economic capital.
“The border closure will not only be beneficial to Ogun State but the national efforts to curtail and contain the virus. Lessons from other climes strongly indicate that closure of borders has the potential to drastically flatten the curve of spread whilst unrestricted movement portends grave dangers,” the statement added.
Somorin explained that the only exceptions to the inter-state restrictions were vehicles conveying personnel involved in essential services such as security agencies, health workers, as well as food, medical items, and petroleum products.
He urged the residents to cooperate with the security agencies who have been fully briefed and directed to effect the closure.
The governor’s aide noted that at a period of a global pandemic and national emergency, all hands must be on deck to slow down the spread of COVID-19.
He, however, assured residents that the border closure and other measures would be reviewed from time to time, in response to developments as they unfold.