The Federal Government has slammed a four-week interim travel restriction on Brazil, India and Turkey over worsening cases of deadly variants of COVID-19 in the countries.

This was disclosed in a new travel advisory by the Presidential Steering Committee (PSC) on COVID-19.

According to the advisory signed by the Chairman of the PSC and Secretary to the Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr Boss Mustapha, the new instructions are general but with specific focus on the three countries because of the prevalence of the dangerous COVID-19 variants.

According to the PSC, the four-week restriction, starting from Tuesday, May 4, 2021, would be in the first instance after which it would be subject to review.

The new advisory also approved the reduction of validity period of pre-boarding COVID-19 PCR test for all Nigeria-bound flights from 96 hours to 72 hours.

It said non-Nigerian passport holders who had visited any of the three countries of concern (Brazil, India and Turkey) in the last 14 days before travelling to Nigeria would be denied entry.

It said violators of the advisory, who travel to Nigeria with fake PCR tests, would be seized on entry and quarantined at their own cost, specifying a $3,500 penalty to defaulting airlines, carrying violating passengers.

It, however, advised Nigerians to shelve all non-essential international travels for the time being, especially to the countries that had recently witnessed explosion in new COVID-19 cases and deaths.

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