PSC to parties, others: Adhere strictly to COVID-19 protocols

Political parties,State Governments and the Independent National Electoral Commission among others have been advised to adhere to COVID-19 protocols.

This advice was contained in a statement by the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19 on Friday.

The statement signed by PSC Chairman and SGF, Boss Mustapha urged the stakeholder to ensure strict compliance with the protocols.

PSC issued the statement a day before the APC Ward congresses scheduled to hold across the country Saturday.

Mustapha said, “Following the recent confirmation of more cases of the Delta variant of COVID-19 in several states and the continued rising number of infections and hospitalization across the country, the Presidential Steering Committee on COVID-19 (PSC), has on all political parties, State governments, Independent National Electoral Commission (INEC) and State Independent Electoral Commissions (SIEC) to ensure strict compliance to the COVID-19 protocols in the conduct of all political events in the country.

“Political mass gatherings serve as super-spreader events for the propagation of COVID-19 infection in our communities. Such events must be carefully controlled to ensure maximum public safety in terms of risk of transmitting the infection among the vulnerable population.

“The PSC wishes to reiterate the significance of the publicized INEC policy conduct of political events and the Code of Conduct for and Political Parties within the context of COVID-19.

“The PSC therefore cautions all political parties to institute public health and social measures in all locations where political events will occur. These measures include:

“i. Mandatory use of face mask for everyone attending these political events. Persons without face masks should not be allowed access to the venues

“ii. Hand hygiene facilities including soap and water/ hand sanitisers should be made available for people before gaining access to the venues

“iii. Enclosed venues should be ventilated and must not exceed 50% of venue capacity (minimum of 2 metres should be observed among people at the gathering).

“iv. If essential, multiple locations or time-slotting should be used with appropriate numbers of people to enable adequate physical distancing in each gathering per time.

“The PSC calls upon all Political Parties, INEC and SIECs to ensure and enforce compliance to the extent possible of these provisions and other safety measures to protect the Nigerian population.”