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Kwara govt declares 24-hour curfew, exempt essential workers

The Kwara State Governor, AbdulRahman AbdulRazaq, has declared a 24-hour curfew across the state following several cases of violence.

The governor made the announcement in a statewide broadcast late Friday night.

WITHIN NIGERIA recall how residents invaded a government warehouse in Ilorin and carted flood relief materials and COVID-19 palliatives.

After the looting, an angry mob proceeded to the office of the Nigerian Customs Service (NCS) demanding access to the facility.

Also, during the process, a car driver was mobbed after hitting two of those present at the scene. The vehicle was burnt down.

On Friday evening, Governor AbdulRazaq said he had a meeting with security chiefs before arriving at the decision.

“Over the last few days, I had earlier met with the traditional rulers, opinion leaders, members of the student community, and many other stakeholders in the state. Our observation is that what has happened so far today was not a protest. It cannot be defended under any guise.”

“It was a pure act of criminality. Some persons are hiding under the nationwide tension to commit crimes. The government has a duty to protect law abiding citizens and their properties. Lives are being threatened. Businesses are being looted. Public properties have been targeted. This is unacceptable. It is not who we are.”

He said the curfew is to curb acts of criminality.

“I hereby declare a 24-hour curfew in Ilorin metropolis from midnight today October 23rd, 2020. This is in line with Sections 1, 2 and 4 of the Public Order Act Chapter 382 Laws of Federation of Nigeria 2004.”

He then advised the people to stay indoors in compliance with the declaration.

“This will be reviewed as we watch developments. While the curfew is on, security forces have been placed on the alert to maintain strict compliance,” the governor said.

Meanwhile, in a new development, the state government has exempted essential workers from the 24-hour curfew.

Those covered in the exemption are health workers; media workers (journalists); petrol station workers; bankers. Such persons would only be accorded such privilege if they present their valid (work place) identity cards identifying them as such, a statement by the honourable Commissioner for Communications, Harriet Afolabi-Oshatimehin stated.

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