BY SUNNY A. IJOMAH
The Sultan of Sokoto, Sa’ad Abubakar, has announced the commencement of Ramadan 2020 as today, Friday, April 24. This followed the sighting of the moon yesterday, April 23.
The Sultan made the announcement on the Federal Radio Corporation of Nigeria (FRCN) and the Nigerian Television Authority (NTA) Network Service at his palace in Sokoto, Northern Nigeria.
This announcement comes at a time Nigeria endures an extended lockdown and restriction of movements meant to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) across the country.
The President-General of the Nigerian Supreme Council of Islamic Affairs (NSCIA) had, however, earlier circulated the rules and regulations to suit the social distancing order of the government during the fasting season of Ramadan 2020.
President Muhamadu Buhari had on Monday, April 13, extended the lockdown in Lagos State, Ogun State and the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, over the coronavirus outbreak. The lockdown extension was for another fourteen days.
The President said the National Centre for Disease Control had informed him that a large proportion of new infections were now occurring in communities, through person-to-person contacts. He therefore urged the citizenry to pay attention to the danger of close contact among persons.
‘At this point, I will remind all Nigerians to continue to take responsibility for the recommended measures to prevent transmission, including maintaining physical distancing, good personal hygiene and staying at home.
‘In addition, I have signed the Quarantine Order in this regard and additional regulations to provide clarity in respect of the control measures for the COVID-19 pandemic which will be released soon,’ Buhari said.
He disclosed that the public health response to COVID-19 was built on Nigeria’s ability to detect, test and admit cases, as well as trace all their contacts.
Buhari, noting that while some appreciable progress had been made, said more could still be achieved.