The Lagos State Government has relaxed the public gathering regulation, increasing the permissible capacity from 20 to 50 persons at any given period.
The government have also directed the re-opening of social clubs with registered trustees and recreational centres with effect from August 14, but with the condition that they must obtain a provisional safety compliance certification from the Lagos State Safety Commission (LSSC).
Nairametrics understands that these new measures were informed by the general decline in positive cases of COVID-19 in the state for a second week in a row.
The disclosure was made by the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu, during his 17th briefing on the COVID-19 response by the state at State House, Marina Lagos on Saturday, August 1, 2020.
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According to the Governor, restaurants in the state can now resume in-dining services from August 14, but at 50% occupancy capacity. More so, a safety clearance is expected to be obtained by these restaurants from the Safety Commission before resuming in-dining services.
Meanwhile, the governor ordered that night clubs, entertainment centres, and cinemas should remain closed till further notice.
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The Governor further disclosed that this new decisions were taken after a careful review of emerging positive events. He also stressed that the decisions to relax the lockdown measures was to create a balance between competing demands of safeguarding lives of the residents and preserving their means of livelihoods. He said:
“Having carefully reviewed the current scenario in Lagos, we have taken some important decisions in line with the ongoing objective of calibrating an effective balance between the competing demands of safeguarding lives and enabling livelihoods.
“Restaurants will now be permitted to open for in-dining services, from August 14, on the condition that they maintain a 50% occupancy capacity. The restaurants must obtain a provisional safety compliance certificate through the LSSC registration portal. We are also increasing the permissible capacity for public gatherings from 20 to 50 persons. This applies to a wide range of events, from funerals, social events to corporate meetings.
“Social clubs and recreational centres will also be allowed to open from August 14, on the condition that they have applied for and obtained a Provisional safety compliance certificate via registration on the LSSC website. The clearance certificates are at this time being issued only to social clubs with registered trustees.”
The Governor also noted that all the mandatory prevention and control measures issued by the State Government must be strictly adhered to, including physical distancing, mandatory temperature checks, use of masks in public places, regular disinfection of premises, and strong personal hygiene.
He warned that social clubs that re-open without complying with the mandatory hygienic protocols and physical distancing requirements will be shut down and face the wrath of the law.
The Governor also added that in the coming days, the opening hours for food and non-food markets may be extended to 5 pm on their various opening days.
Sanwo-Olu revealed that the Lagos State Government patterned its response strategy after Mumbai, an Indian megacity that shares similar demographic and climatic conditions with Lagos. He also observed that Lagos had recorded similar results and successes with Mumbai in its COVID-19 response.
On the isolation centres, the Governor said, “We have run through a model that shows that we have built excess isolation capacity over the last five months. We have to come to a stage where we need to balance the economics of risk, as to which isolation facility should we need to keep running. Some of the isolation centres are having less than 20 per cent of their occupancy capacities. This is why we concluded to shut the Eti-Osa facility and another one in Lekki.’’
Sanwo-Olu urged compliance with the measures outlined in the new regulations, stressing that LSSC has a statutory responsibility to monitor the activities and operations of all organizations and worship centres that have been permitted to re-open.