In President Muhammadu Buhari's Christmas message to Nigerians, the Federal Government expressed concerns about the second wave of COVID-19 and urged Nigerians to guard against further spread of the virus.
Allnews gathered that President Buhari wished Nigerians Merry Christmas alongside the State Governors and all other public holders on Thursday.
In the statement signed by the President and make available to newsmen by his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina said there were indications that Nigeria was already experiencing the second wave of COVID-19 infection.
He, therefore, urged Nigerians to adhere strictly to the non-pharmaceutical prevention guidelines of regular hand washing, wearing masks and social/physical distancing with a view to mitigating the spread of the devastating virus.
“While national and state institutions are trying their best, we must take individual responsibility and resist the strong temptation of compliance-fatigue by following the recommended protocols put in place by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19 and beat the ravaging pandemic.
“I have absolute confidence in the spirit of resilience of our people to do the needful and remain vigilant even as this festive season witnesses increased travels and celebrations. Staying alive to enjoy future festivals should be the watchword,” the statement reads in part.
The President, however, said the security challenges confronting the nation were beyond “the simplistic options being bandied around. He pleaded with Nigerians to give the military and other security agencies more time, cooperation, and support.
Later on Thursday, Buhari said he would not host dignitaries to the annual Christmas homage this year.
The Senior Special Assistant to the President on Media and Publicity, Garba Shehu, announced this in a statement titled “President Buhari cancels Christmas homage.”
The usual practice is that the incumbent Vice-President and Minister of the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) lead dignitaries to pay homage to the President during all major Muslim and Christian festivals.
Shehu’s statement read, “In line with the prevailing protocols put in place by the Presidential Task Force on COVID-19, restricting large gatherings, President Muhammadu Buhari will not be hosting the usual Christmas homage by religious and community leaders in the Federal Capital Territory.”