It is now an offence punishable by six months imprisonment for anybody stepping out of their houses without wearing a face mask.
This is, according to a new law signed by President Muhammadu Buhari on Wednesday to check the spread of COVID-19 pandemic.
The Executive Order made it mandatory for wearing of face masks, hand washing, and the use of hand sanitizers, amongst other regulations.
Chairman of the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and the Secretary to the Government of the Federation, Mr. Boss Mustapha, who disclosed this on Wednesday while handing over five ambulances donated by the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) to the Federal Ministry of Health in Abuja, said that the law stipulated a penal-ty of a fine or a prison of six months for offenders.
Mustapha said that the bill, entitled ‘COVID-19 Health Protection Regulations 2021’, is an exercise of the powers as conferred on the president by Section 4 of the Quarantine Act.
“The regulations enforce physical distancing of at least two meters and a regulation of the number of people to be admitted in an enclosed environment.
While reading from an ex-tract of the law, Mustapha said that the president exercised his powers as conferred upon him by Section 4 of the Quarantine Act, Cap. Q2 Laws of the Federation of Nigeria 2010 and all other powers enabling him in that be-half; and in consideration of the urgent need to protect the health and wellbeing of Nigerians in the face of the widespread and rising number of COVID-19 cases in Nigeria.
“The first part of the new regulations imposes restrictions of gatherings and enforces a physical distancing of not less than two meters between per-sons at all times,” the PTF chairman added.