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  • Updated: May 13, 2020

COVID-19: Danger As Face Masks Picked From Refuse Dumps Are Resold To Nigerians

COVID-19: Danger As Face Masks Picked From Refuse Dumps Are


The Presidential Task Force, PTF, on COVID-19 has sounded an alarm over the unhealthy practice of some Nigerians who pick face masks from refuse dumps for re-sell, warning that such a practice would worsen the spread of COVID-19 in the country.

The Chairman of the task force and Secretary to the Government of the Federation, SGF, Mr Boss Mustapha, who raised the alarm at the PTF press briefing in Abuja on Tuesday, lamented that some people in the country were still sharing face masks.

According to him, “The unhealthy practice of picking disposed masks for whatever purpose is harmful to both the individual picking them and whoever procures them later.

“The PTF has become aware of the ongoing practice of sharing masks and picking of masks for recycling from dumpsites. This places a lot of responsibility on all of us to be self-educated and to educate others.

“The following points are emphasised: except for fabric masks, every disposable used mask is a hazardous medical waste and should be disposed of properly, preferably by burning.

“It is very risky to share masks as the virus is capable of remaining on surfaces for several hours and you could get infected.”

Mustapha also said northern state governments, which had been evacuating the Quranic school pupils, popularly known as Almajirai, to their states of origin should suspend it.

AllNews recalls that Northern Governors’ Forum, in a statement issued after its meeting on April 21, unanimously decided to ban the Almajirai system of education, stressing that the children should be sent back to their parents or states of origin.

Expressing concern about carrying out such move during Coronavirus pandemic, the SGF said, “This is not the time for movement of Almajirai because of interstate lockdown. If you say interstate movements are banned, I don’t think that movements of Almajirai are essential movements.”

He urged state governments to align their actions and enforcement with the guidelines provided by the PTF, stressing that, “The virus does not respect boundaries neither does it respect status. All state governments are, therefore, urged to strengthen their monitoring and enforcement machinery in collaboration with the security agencies.”

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