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Kaduna orders removal of roadblocks at state boundaries

Kaduna orders removal of roadblocks at state boundaries
June 15
22:14 2020

The Kaduna state government has directed the removal of roadblocks at various boundaries of the state.

This development is coming a week after the state government lifted the 75 days lockdown to curb the spread of COVID-19.

Roadblocks had earlier been stationed at the boundaries of the state to implement the lockdown and interstate travel ban as directed by the federal government.

In a statement on Monday, Muyiwa Adekeye, special adviser on media to the governor, said the state government has ordered relevant agencies to dismantle  and relocate the barricades that  enforced the ban on interstate travel.

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He said boundary patrols undertaken by state government officials as part of the quarantine regulations have also stopped forthwith.

Adekeye said the decision is based on the recommendation of the state task force on COVID-19, following a review of the situation at the state boundaries.

“Clearly, the prohibition of interstate travel by the Federal Government as part of Covid-19 containment efforts has largely been observed in the breach by the people charged with enforcing it,” the statement read.

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“The state government has received reports of persistent extortion of vehicles conveying essential goods by some security officials, thus complicating an already challenging period.

“State Taskforce on Covid-19 noted that the prohibition of interstate travel has been consistently implemented only when state government officials have been deployed to the entry points.

“While insufficient to stop the influx of persons, these exertions by senior officials were a necessary sacrifice to help reduce the chances of Covid-19 spread through interstate travel.”

Adekeye said “officials on boundary duty consistently reported at best lacklustre or perfunctory cooperation by security agencies in enforcing the interstate travel ban.”

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He added that “the conduct of such officials is also jeopardising the timely and cost-effective delivery of essential goods.”

“While non-essential travel has been wantonly indulged at the state boundaries, there are reports of continued extortion by some security agents of vehicles transporting essentials goods,” he said.

“Therefore, the Kaduna State Government has directed that roadblocks at state boundaries be dismantled. Henceforth, the only roadblocks authorised within the state are those that are mounted to enforce the 8pm-5am curfew.”

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