Ogun State Commissioner for Information and Strategy, Waheed Odusile, has said travellers returning from the United Kingdom to Nigeria do not need to isolate themselves for a period of time recommended by the Federal Government and the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC).
Odusile said this in an effort to defend Governor Dapo Abiodun, who returned to the country recently and resumed work immediately.
While featuring on a radio programme in Abeokuta, the commissioner was asked to explain why Gov Abiodun failed to observe self-isolation on his return from his recent controversial foreign trip that involved his Deputy, Noimot Salako-Oyedele and the Speaker, Olakunle Oluomo, same time.
Reacting, Odusile, who said Ogun State regularly observes all COVID-19 guidelines put out by the Federal Government, explained that the British Government had removed Nigeria from the list of countries that should isolate themselves.
According to him, any traveller returning from Britain into Nigeria does not need to self-isolate when he arrives in the country.
“There is no Federal Government COVID-19 protocol that Ogun State does to adhere to. Like one or two weeks ago the British government removed Nigeria from countries that should observe self-isolation. This was as a result of an assessment of our country.
“Nigeria is no longer among countries whose citizens should observe self-isolation whenever they travel to Britain. Go and check it. I’m not saying this applies to all foreign countries visited. I am talking about the United Kingdom where the governor travelled to. Nigeria is no more among Nations whose citizens should observe self-isolation on their return from the UK,” Odusile posited.
However, it is observed that the commissioner’s position might be in sharp contrast with the recommendations of the Federal Government.
In September, the National Incident Manager (NIM) of the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19, Mukhtar Muhammad, said 2,000 travellers who flouted the nat’s travel protocols against COVID-19 have had their international passports suspended for one year.
Muhammed explained that the government had insisted those who arrived into Nigeria, especially from those nations it described as “high risk” countries must quarantine in a facility provided by the government.
DAILY POST also noted that Odusile’s claim that the British government had exempted UK returnees from quarantine seems incorrect.
Recently, the British High Commission said: “From Monday, 11 October 2021, fully vaccinated travellers from Nigeria will be able to come to England without needing to provide a pre-departure test, undertake a day 8 test or self-isolate for 10 days, although will still need to book and pay for a day 2 test.”