Domestic airlines in Nigeria have begun suspending flight operations over the coronavirus outbreak in the country.
The suspension of operations is coming days after a memo by the Nigerian Civil Aviation Authority announced the closure of all airports to international flights.
In different statements, Air Peace, Arik Air, Aero Contractor, Azman Air, and Dana Air announced the suspension of all flight operations.
Dana Air announced that it would stop flight operations from Wednesday for two weeks.
Flight suspension update…. pic.twitter.com/wcdpwyY6xm
— Dana Airlines Ltd. (@DanaAir) March 25, 2020
In its statement, Air Peace said that the suspension was done in the best interest of the nation, passengers and the entire workforce.
This difficult decision was reached in order to support the efforts of the Federal Government and other stakeholders in curbing the spread of this virus in our nation, while also protecting our esteemed passengers and staff from becoming victims of the pandemic.
The suspension is to take effect from Friday.
— Air Peace (@flyairpeace) March 25, 2020
Similarly, Arik Air will also suspend operations from Friday. The airline said customers can still make use of their tickets when it resumes operation.
According to Punch, a statement by Roy Ilegbodu, the CEO of Arik Air read: “The safety and well-being of our valued customers are paramount at this period of a health emergency. We implore everyone to keep safe and abide by all directives issued by governmental authorities.”
Azman Air said that its operations will also be suspended for two weeks from Friday. The statement read:
The consensus was reached after a detailed consultation with stakeholders in the Nigerian aviation industry and in a bid to support the Federal Government efforts in curtailing the spread of Coronavirus and to ensure its eventual eradication.
Breaking News!@AzmanAir suspends Flight Operations for Two Weeks.
— AzmanAir – #LetsFlyAzmanAir (@AzmanAir) March 25, 2020
Also, Aero Contractors, in a statement, said it has decided to suspend flight services in support of initiatives to ensure that there is no community infection in the country. The statement reads:
Coronavirus, known as COVID-19, is a global threat to our humanity and considering its devastating effect on many countries where it has led to death of thousands of people, we have decided to make this onerous sacrifice by suspending our flight operations for two weeks, effective midnight 26 March, 2020.
After the two-week duration, we will review the progress made and take a decision on resumption of operations.
UCH partially shuts down operations as some doctors go into self-isolation
The University College Hospital (UCH), Ibadan, has suspended key services due to the ongoing coronavirus outbreak. The suspension of consultation services to regular outpatients was announced by the Chief Medical Director (CMD) of the hospital, Jesse Otegbayo, on Wednesday.
According to reports from Guardian, Otegbayo said other departments in the hospital will also stop rendering services till further notice. The units affected are outpatients clinics, medicine, and surgery, and pediatric departments. Otegbayo said the action became necessary due to the accidental exposure of some doctors in the institution to some suspected Covid-19 patients.
He said that the suspension was to curtail the spread of the deadly disease. With the suspension of these services, this implies that scores of people who regularly access medical treatment from the institution will no longer have access to it until further notice.
This will affect not just the state or South-western Nigeria, but patients from all over the country.
Two Persons Allegedly Die Of Coronavirus After Attending 80th Birthday Party Of Nigeria’s Ambassador To United Kingdom
Two yet-to-be-identified persons are alleged to have died of coronavirus after attending the lavish and star-studded 80th birthday party of Nigeria’s Ambassador to the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland, George Adetola Oguntade. The ceremony, which took place on March 10, 2020, was held in the UK’s most popular city, London.
According to Punch, The development has since raised fears that scores of other attendees at the ceremony could have contracted the deadly virus. Among prominent Nigerians who attended the party are billionaire Rasak Okoya and his wife Sade, a former governor of Ogun State, Olusegun Osoba, Kessington Adebutu (Baba Ijebu), Oba Saheed Elegushi, Ebenezer Obey, and Dele Momodu.
Many of these high-profile guests have since returned to Nigeria, further raising concerns that some of them may have imported the dreaded virus into the country without knowing.
Rivers and Kogi states close their borders
Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers declared all state borders shut indefinitely, barring movement in and out of the state from Wednesday to guard against the spread of the virus. The governor announced on his Twitter that the move is to protect residents from the coronavirus.
The Rivers state government has banned movements into and outside the state. Nobody comes in and nobody leaves the state till further notice. This is a move at protecting our dear state from the deadly corona virus.
— Governor Wike (@NyesomWlKE) March 25, 2020
Also, Kogi State on Wednesday announced the closure of all points in and out of the state as part of efforts to contain the coronavirus pandemic in the state.
In a statement by the Commissioner for Information and Communication, Kingsley Fanwo, ordered the immediate closure of all entry points, including land and waterways, The Nation reports.
The statement read:
All entry points into Kogi State (land and waterways) are now closed. Entry and transit by any vehicle are subject to a successful health check of all passengers. All transport companies, transport unions, and terminal operators must keep a travel manifest for inbound and outbound passengers, especially verified phone numbers.
They must also provide hand-wash stands with soap in the garages and hand sanitizers in the buses.
Photo Credit: @bellanaijastyle