The Senate on Tuesday asked the Inspector-General of Police, Mohammed Adamu, and the Commandant-General of the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps, Abdullahi Muhammadu, to investigate the alleged complicity of security officers in the breach of the curfew and ban on non-essential interstate travels and bring to book anyone found wanting.
The Federal Government on the advice of the Nigerian Government Forum had about a week ago anounced a nationwide ban on non-essential interstate travels, but investigations showed lax implementation of the order.
It eas learnt that many interstatenon-essential travels continued in significant numbers as security operatives compromised the implementation.
The demand for the investigation was adopted by the lawmakers on Tuesday.
It followed deliberation on a motion titled “Need to Enforce Presidential Order Banning Interstate Movement” sponsored by Ike Ekweremadu (PDP, Enugu).
Mr Ekweremadu decried the increasing number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country.
President Muhammadu Buhari had issued a Proclamation Order banning non-essential inter-state passenger travels until further notice in order to contain the deadly novel Coronavirus. He had also imposed a dusk to dawn curfew all over the country
This is part of the phased easing of lockdown in the Federal Capital Territory and some states.
Mr Ekweremadu expressed worry at the numerous reports and trending videos on the flagrant breach of the curfew and ban on interstate travel.
“The Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 has raised alarm over what it described as “Increased level of interstate movement, worsened by the dubious concealment of people in food-carrying vehicles”. The Nigeria Governors’ Forum has equally raised serious concerns over the way Nigerians crisscross the country in their numbers despite the subsisting order to the contrary
“Conscious of the very grave implications of the brazen breach of the presidential order restricting interstate movements and equally conscious of the fact that the nation’s security agencies, particularly the police, have the responsibility to enforce law and order, including the presidential ban on interstate movement
“We are worried about reports of alleged complicity in the said breaches by those who are supposed to enforce compliance with the directives of the president.”
Lawmakers who contributed to the motion, emphasised the need for Nigerians to adhere to the president’s directives as well as other health advisories.
While the Senate condemned “the barefaced breach” of the presidential order on interstate movements, it urged Nigerians to strictly comply with these orders for their own safety and to quicken the nation’s victory over the COVID-19 pandemic.
The Senate also urged Messrs Adamu and Muhammadu to fully enforce presidential orders on curfew and ban on nonessential interstate travel as well as ensure that their various commands cooperate with respective state authorities in enforcing the presidential orders and other protocols aimed at rolling back the COVID-19 pandemic.