Coronavirus (Covid-19) Regulations 2020, which has officially declared the virus a dangerous infectious disease has been signed into law by President Muhammadu Buhari. It was signed yesterday (Monday March 30, 2020). In a statement by Mr. Femi Adesina, presidential spokesman, said the president signed the regulation in exercise of the powers conferred on him by Sections 2, 3 and 4 of the Quarantine Act (CAP Q2 LFN 2004), and all other powers enabling him in that behalf. The Regulations, which becomes effective March 30, 2020, also gave legal backing to the various measures outlined in the President’s National Broadcast on March 29, 2020.
Recall that Buhari had on Sunday ordered restrictions in both human and business activities in Lagos and Ogun States as well as the capital city of Abuja in a bid to contain the spread of the dreaded disease. Some legal practitioners have lashed at the president over the restrictions, which they considered as illegal and usurping the power of state governors.
Adesina in the statement said, “In exercise of the powers conferred on him by Sections 2, 3 and 4 of the Quarantine Act (CAP Q2 LFN 2004), and all other powers enabling him in that behalf, President Muhammadu Buhari, Monday, signed the Covid-19 Regulations, 2020, which declared Covid-19 a dangerous infectious disease.
“The Regulations, effective March 30, 2020, also gave legal backing to the various measures outlined in the President’s National Broadcast on March 29, 2020, such as Restriction/Cessation of movement in Lagos State, Ogun State and Abuja as well as others toward containing the spread of the pandemic in the country. In addition, to ensure that Nigerians can still perform on-line transactions and use ATMs whilst observing these restrictions, exemption is granted financial system and money markets to allow very skeletal operations in order to keep the system in light operations during the pendency of these regulations,” the statement added.