Severity: Critical Alert
Exit/Entry: Authorities in Nigeria to resume domestic flights from July 8 amid easing of COVID-19 restrictions. 2200-0400 curfew in place.
- Alert Begins: 02 Jul 2020 02:11 AM UTC
- Alert Expires: 20 Aug 2020 11:59 PM UTC
- Incident: COVID-19 restrictions
- Location(s): Nationwide (map)
- Time Frame: Indefinite
- Impact: Travel and business disruptions
Authorities in Nigeria announced that domestic flights will resume operations from July 8 amid easing of restrictions related to coronavirus disease (COVID-19). Airports in Abuja and Lagos will reopen July 8. Other airports can resume operations between July 11 and 15, depending on their ability to meet the government's health and safety requirements. Interstate travel resumed throughout the country July 1. Some academic activities have also been allowed to resume.
Restrictions that remain in effect include:
- Sea and land borders are closed until further notice. The measure does not apply to freight transport.
- 2200-0400 nationwide curfew in place until further notice.
- International passenger flights are suspended until further notice; the ban does not apply to cargo and emergency flights.
- Residents are required to wear face coverings while in public.
- Public gatherings of more than 20 people are banned.
- Bars, nightclubs, cinemas, gyms, and parks will remain closed until further notice.
Multiple states have also enacted strict state-level restrictions. Authorities could introduce additional preventative measures or ease restrictions, depending on the disease activity in the coming days and weeks.
Background and Analysis
The measures adopted by the government have evolved in recent weeks in response to the spread of COVID-19. Nigeria has reported more than 25,000 cases of the disease, with almost 600 fatalities; however, there are concerns that the true impact is yet to be assessed due to inadequate testing and poor medical facilities. COVID-19 is a viral respiratory disease caused by infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus (previously known as 2019-nCoV). Symptoms occur 1-14 days following exposure (average of 3-7 days). These symptoms include fever, fatigue, cough, difficulty breathing, sometimes worsening to pneumonia and kidney failure - especially in those with underlying medical conditions. On March 11, the WHO declared the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak a pandemic.
Follow all official instructions. Abide by national health and safety measures. Consider delaying traveling to Nigeria until officials lift restrictions. Liaise with trusted contacts for further updates and guidance. Maintain contact with your diplomatic representation. Ensure contingency plans account for further disruptive measures or extensions of current restrictions. Reconsider and reconfirm nonemergency health appointments. Plan for queues and delays at available shopping centers.
Emphasize basic health precautions, especially frequent handwashing with soap and water, or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable. Practice good coughing/sneezing etiquette (i.e., covering coughs and sneezes with a disposable tissue, maintaining distance from others, and washing hands). There is no evidence that the influenza vaccine, antibiotics, or antiviral medications will prevent this disease, highlighting the importance of diligent basic health precautions.