It was business as usual at most clubs, bars and lounges in Lagos last night as many fun seekers and club owners defied the ban on such gatherings of over 20 people by the state government.
Governor Babajide Sanwo-Olu had imposed more drastic restrictions on large gatherings as a measure to contain the spread of the ravaging coronavirus.
Daily Trust reports that the state government had initially banned religious gatherings of more than 50 people which prompted the shut down of some mosques in Lagos on Friday.
Following the discovery of five new cases in Lagos, the government further extended the ban, restricting social gatherings of 20 people as the government embarks on contact tracing of over 1,300 people.
Sanwo-Olu had addressed a press conference on Friday on the issue.
He wrote on his Twitter handle; @jidesanwoolu: “In our bid to fight #COVID19 and protect our residents, I gave a press briefing today announcing the closures of clubs, bars, and other social gatherings in addition to other announcements affecting religious and academic institutions of all levels.”
In our bid to fight #COVID19 and protect our residents, I gave a press briefing today announcing the closures of clubs, bars, and other social gatherings in addition to other announcements affecting religious and academic institutions of all levels. pic.twitter.com/T9PmVZhpPR
— Babajide Sanwo-Olu (@jidesanwoolu) March 20, 2020
But checks by our correspondent last night showed that the ban is yet to take effect with many bars, lounges and night clubs in Lagos operating normally.
As it is typical of bars and clubs on Friday nights in Lagos, fun seekers went about their usual routine in many parts of the state.
Our correspondent, who drove around the Ikeja metropolis last night, observed that many night clubs were still bustling and crowded.
Some of the areas visited by our correspondent included; Obafemi Awolowo Way where vehicles took over parts of the road; Ogba, Ojodu, Opebi Allen, Olowu, Akilo road, Oba Akran Avenue, amongst others.
It was observed, however, that some of the clubs only provided hand sanitizer for visitors at the gate without any form of social distancing as preached by the governor.
A security guard at one of the bars, who was asked why the bar was still opened despite the ban imposed by the Governor, said: “Yes, that’s what we heard but we are praying to God.”