People want a total containment of the virus. And for this reason many are calling for a corona virus shut down protocol that would force people to stay at home.
Staying indoor is not the issue. The issue is however the after effect of such a drastic decision which is the best preventive measure one can think of in a time as frightening as this.
Corona virus in Nigeria is getting worse with each pass day and just like other countries, social distancing and staying indoor is now the best means to combat the spread of the virus.
The wife of the President of the Federal republic of Nigeria, Aisha Buhari took to her Twitter handle to support a total lockdown.
“ It is commendable that state governors have closed down schools; however , this could be counterproductive if parents are still going to work. “ We should not isolate students and expose their parents. “ Let us remember that they will meet at home. “ #TotalLockDown
Unlike foreign countries where people can work from home and still get paid through the whole pandemic, that is not the case here in Nigeria.
We hear of governments trying to help citizens through the health crisis with cash and other incentives.
But we know, Nigeria would be the last country on earth to try such even though we need it the most.
Especially when we look at certain factors like lack of electricity, which would make the staying at home exercise a nightmare.
Before the arrival of corona virus in Nigeria, the issue of hunger and lack of proper health was and is still a serious issue.
Which means we are all going to face a total corona virus shut down while struggling with the absence of these basic amenities.
It would be like living in hell!
If other countries can sustain a total stay at home preventive measure, it is because they have certain basic amenities in place.
Like electricity, water, the ability to work from home. Online classes for their kids. All of which as a country we lack.
Unless you are among the rich and mighty of our society that cab afford these necessities without sweat.
Boss Mustapha, secretary to the government of the federation and chairman of presidential task force on COVID-19, announced this evening.
“Ladies and gentlemen, after a further review, Mr. President on the recommendation of Presidential Task Force (PTF) has approved the following additional measures: Suspension of the weekly FEC meetings until further notice; postponement of the meeting of the Council of State scheduled for Thursday 26th March, 2020;
“All land borders that have been hitherto under partial closure shall now be closed for human traffic for four weeks effective, 23rd March, 2020; in order to protect Federal Civil and Public Servants, a circular to be issued by the Head of Civil Service of the Federation (HCSF) shall direct on actions to be taken immediately;
“All Abuja and Lagos residents are strongly advised to stay at home, avoid mass congregation of any kind as well as non-essential outings, until further advice is given.” Mustapha also gave an update on the coronavirus statistic across the world, citing the World Health Organisation (WHO).
“As at the time the Honourable Minister of Health (HMoH), briefed you earlier today, the numbers from the World Health Organisation (WHO), confirmed that the virus has covered 192 countries, reporting over 329,000 cases,” he said.
“In Africa, 42 out of 54 countries have reported cases while 48 deaths have been recorded. In Nigeria, 36 cases have been reported and one fatality has occurred. The first responders, particularly the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), continues to attend to reports received through telephone calls and other medium.
“We commend Nigerians for stepping out to report and/or make enquires through the dedicated hotlines. Records show that on Sunday, 22nd March, 2020, over 4500 calls were received. This shows the high level of awareness amongst Nigerians.
“The strategy of government is to focus on testing, detection and containment through contact tracking in order to minimize hugely, the possibility of community spread. We urge anyone experiencing the symptoms of the virus or has been in contact with anyone who has been suspected or tested positive to please report at the nearest medical facility or the designated center.
“The Presidential Task Force (PTF) continues to monitor the global and domestic developments and has isolated Lagos and Abuja for particular attention in view of their population, mobility and number of cases already reported.”
I believe a total corona virus shut down protocol would bring its own dangers.
Whatever the government decides to do, it should make sure that the complete welfare of the people is made top priority.
Or we shall face a situation where hunger would drive thousands back into the streets.
There are currently hundred of thousands of Nigerians who survive on this daily hustle.
To ask this set of Nigerians to go home and stay, is to ask for hunger that would lead to serious episodes of petty crimes.
If total lock down is now the next phase then the government should support Nigerians in getting food.
Especially for those who before now couldn’t even afford one meal a day.
Or else the hunger would make corona virus itself look like child’s play.