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COVID-19: Low compliance with preventive measures worries groups

Razaq Bamidele

Two Non-Governmental Organizations, Yoruba Radical Assembly (YRA), and Campaign for Dignity in Governance (CDG), have expressed concerns over the low compliance with the preventive measures put together by the authorities to fight the dreaded disease, Coronavirus.

The groups, in separate statements lamented the lukewarm attitudes being exhibited by some sections of the populace towards preventing the spread of the dreaded disease code-named COVID-19 believed to have been imported into the country recently by an Italian.

The Yoruba Radical Assembly (YRA), in a statement by its General Secretary, Comrade Adekunle Adeosun, reminded that the South-western zone of the country has recorded the highest number of COVID-19 patients with one death, saying, it was so due to the fact that the entry point of the patient has remained the Muritala Muhammed International Airport in Lagos, south-west Nigeria.

The group praised President Muhammadu Buhari for doing the needful by shutting the Airport down, advising him to also activate the Military, other security and Para military agencies to create more awareness and enforcement of the measures.

“We have noticed the importance Mr. President has attached to Lagos State by the audience granted to the Governor of Lagos, we enjoin the President to continue to give this needed encouragement as it is a testimony that Sanwo-Olu deserves such encouragement because of his proactive steps since the beginning of the Convid-19 crisis. 

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“Our Governors in the South-west should emulate Governor of Lagos State by initiating an Incident Task Force to manage and combat the spread of the virus and all the containment rogrammes,” the group urged.

The YRA asserted that, the populace needs more education, enlightenment on the situation at hand just as it called for unity and harmony from public office holders, urging them to emulate  the Minister of Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola’s style of enlightenment as contained in a Video that has gone viral on ways tackle the monster.

The group, which threatened to document and pass to the government  at various levels, all the groups, institutions and individuals that refuse to comply with Government directives and demand immediate sanctions for such defiance also called on the closest level of Government to the people, the 774 Local Governments in the country to also role out Programmes for intervention. 

“And we enjoin the Governments in the South-western region to close up with the other regions through alliance and cooperation with the border by exchanging programmes, sharing of knowledge and experience needed among us for the war against the deadly virus. If we are United Corona virus will be defeated,” the statement admonished.

The group observed  that the lockdown is not a punitive measure saying, rather, it is borne out of the fact that, “we cannot control this outbreak without lockdown and the early lockdown would yield better results both in terms of reduction in mortality rate and how long it may want to take to eradicate it in Nigeria.”

The group therefore rebroadcast the helpline by Lagos State Government thus: 0800CORONA, advising all the other states in the country to follow such step. 

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In a related development, the Campaign for Dignity in Governance (CDG), on its part has said that one of the ways Nigeria can be prevented from sinking is for the people to abide by all the preventive measures put in place by the authorities.

This was contained in statement signed by the co-convener of the group, Ramat Abdul-Razaq titled, ‘COVID-19: Nigeria Will not Sink,’ where she regretted that, the level of compliance with the stay safe at home was very low compared to what is obtainable across the universe.

According to the Lady right activist, “roads are deserted across the globe becauset he world is passing through a trauma and difficult moment,” disclosing that,” the total number of infection globally is 308,000 while the death toll has risen up to 13,000 mark!”

Breaking down the figure, the Lady said Italy has recorded 4,825 deaths which is the highest in the world with 53,578 infected lamenting that, Britain could be overwhelmed like Italy as statistics has shown.

In Nigeria, the statement said, the country has recorded only one dead with 22 other people infected, reminding that, the World Health Organization (WHO), has warned that Africa could be the worst hit continent because she is ill prepared!

The heart-warming aspect of the incident according to her, is the observation that, there was no new case in China, the country believed to be the origin of the dreaded disease apart from the 43 imported. 

“Therefore, we stand with the President Muhammadu Buhari on his efforts at curbing the spread of the imported virus. We hereby encourage him to continue to do more till the dreaded disease would be totally flushed out Nigeria. He has done well and he should continue to do his best. The Presidents should approve all possible measures of compliance suggested while the residents must learn a lot from the experiences of other countries worst hit,” she admonished. 

The group also urged the 774 Local Governments’ Chairmen across the country to exhibit act of patriotism, lamenting that, the absence of their  role at this moment is conspicuously and regrettably noticed. 

The CDG however commended Governor Sanwo-Olu of Lagos State for doing well by taking the lead in the war against COVID-19, and encouraged him to keep up the good work, warning that Governors of the other 35 states should not wait until their citizens are infected before initiating an incident command centre like Lagos.  

“The video of the vibrant and energetic Minister of Works and Housing, Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN), on how best to prevent the virus is inspiring and a morale booster,” the statement pointed out, urging other public office holders to emulate his patriotic move to save the country from the jaws of COVID-19.

The CDG therefore warned against bickering, destructive criticism and placing difficult demands before the authorities to avoid setting the country backward, admonishing that, “rather, we should close ranks like the Chinese, who are billions in population, that is overcoming it.”

In conclusion, the group disclosed that, all its chapters, braches and units across Nigeria have been instructed to commence country wide enlightenment on Socio media and report incident of non-compliance with the federal directive and restrictions.” 

The CDG, like its YRA counterpart also rebroadcast the emergency numbers of Lagos and the Federal Government respectively thus: LAGOS: 08000CORONA and Federal Government: 080097000010

“This country will not sink. Let us resolve that we will come off this stronger. We must obey the safety rule. We must be disciplined and admit that personal sacrifice and denials are the prices we must pay,” the group begged praying God that, “this phase will also pass like others before it.”