September 28, (THEWILL) – The Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19 has placed a one-year ban on over 2,000 Nigerians and foreigners traveling to and from the country for evading the Coronavirus Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) test at the country’s international airports.
This was disclosed by the National Incident Manager (NIM) of the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC), Mukhtar Muhammad, on Monday, in Abuja.
Muhammad said the names have been pasted at major federal medical facilities where medical experts have been assigned to care for Nigerians and foreigners that travelled into the country during the third wave of the COVID-19.
He said the government had insisted that passengers who arrived into the country, especially from high-risk countries, must be quarantined in a government-provided facility. In addition, the passports of those who failed to comply with the protocol had been suspended for one year.
“We have included the provision of quarantine for passengers, who arrived from high-risk countries and people who evaded these protocols have been penalised by publishing their names, as well as suspending their passports for one year.
“Let me assure you that so far we have published the list of over 2,000 people who evaded quarantine in our health facilities. And we have gone ahead to ensure that their passports are suspended, so, for every action there are consequences”, he said.
On May 1, 2021, the PSC issued a Travel Advisory for Passengers arriving in Nigeria from Brazil, India and Turkey.
According to the chairman, Boss Mustapha, the precautionary measures were necessary to mitigate the risk of importation of variants of concern and break the chain of transmission to the population.
Under the measures, passengers arriving from or that have visited particular countries within fourteen (14) days prior to visiting Nigeria, were required to follow mandatory arrival quarantine and testing protocols in designated facilities.
But many passengers failed to observe the compulsory isolation or to present themselves for the PCR repeat test on day seven, various findings have shown.
The PSC had previously also published names and passport numbers of defaulters.