President Buhari Succumbs To Public Pressure, Signs COVID-19 Regulations 2020
After intense strain from the Nigerian public particularly from senior authorized practitioners and different outstanding residents, President Muhammadu Buhari on Monday introduced the signing into legislation of the COVID-19 Regulations.
Sections 2, Three and four of the Quarantine Act (CAP Q2 LFN 2004) conferred such powers on President Buhari.
It was the authorized framework wanted to implement the lockdown order in Lagos, Ogun and the FCT issued by Buhari on Sunday throughout a nationwide broadcast.
The announcement was made on Monday evening by Special Adviser to President Buhari on Media and Publicity, Femi Adesina.
President Buhari had addressed Nigerians on the outbreak and continued unfold of Coronavirus 35 days after the nation’s first case was recorded.
A flurry of criticisms over his silence and perceived lack of concern on the harm attributable to the pandemic had pushed him to talk.
Recall that earlier on Monday, Senior Advocate of Nigeria, Femi Falana, had mentioned that the lockdown order couldn’t be enforced besides it was backed by a legislation.
He mentioned, “No doubt, the President is empowered to undertake any measure deemed match to fight the damaging illness however such measure must be spelt out in a Regulation made pursuant to part 305 of the structure or beneath the Quarantine Act.
“Otherwise the presidential order on restriction of movement in the affected areas cannot be enforced by the police.”
Another lawyer, Inibehe Effiong, whereas reiterating Falana’s place, in truth vowed to problem the illegality of Buhari’s motion in court docket.
He mentioned, “After a deep reflection on President Muhammadu Buhari’s resolution to lock down all actions in Lagos, Ogun and Abuja by presidential fiat for 14 days, I’ve resolved to problem this unconstitutional motion in court docket.
“No accountable, democratic and civilised nation will throw its structure and legal guidelines into the dustbin in an effort to sort out a pandemic like COVID-19 the way in which President Buhari has carried out. Freedom of motion is a elementary proper assured by Section 41 of the structure.
“While it’s conceded that this proper just isn’t absolute, Section 45 of the structure is evident to the impact that freedom of motion can solely be taken away within the method allowed by a legislation that’s moderately justifiable in a democratic society. Buhari has not relied on any legislation.
“If Buhari is convinced that extraordinary measures are needed to contain Coronavirus, the proper action would have been for him to issue an instrument published in the official gazette of the government and make a proclamation of a state of emergency in Lagos, Ogun and Abuja.”
Also including his voice to the difficulty earlier on Monday, Nobel Laureate, Prof Wole Soyinka, mentioned that President Buhari had no constitutional backing to declare a complete lockdown of Lagos, Ogun and Abuja.
He mentioned, “The worst development I can conceive is to have a situation where rational measures for the containment of the Corona pandemic are rejected on account of their questionable genesis.
“So, earlier than this turns into a behavior, a query: does President Buhari have the powers to shut down state borders? We need clear solutions. We should not in a struggle emergency.
“We need to exercise collective vigilance, and not compromise the future by submitting to interventions that are not backed by law and constitution.”
However, earlier defending Buhari’s declaration of a lockdown in all three cities, Nigeria’s Attorney-General of the Federation, Abubakar Malami, mentioned that the President didn’t want any particular authorized framework to have the order enforced because the Quarantine Act already coated that.
Malami mentioned, “The appropriate place stays that the President acted rightfully beneath the powers conferred on him by the Quarantine Act 1990 CAP 384 LFN.
“Section 3 of the Act enables the President to declare any part of Nigeria as an infected area. Section 4 of the Act further empowers the President to make regulations to prevent the introduction, spread and transmission of any dangerous infectious disease.”
But with Buhari’s newest transfer on Monday, Malami now stands alone on the matter.
Enforcement of the order is now anticipated to begin in Lagos and FCT whereas it would take impact in Ogun from April 3.
Saharareporters, New York