Residents of Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital have expressed dismay over what they describe as carelessness on the side of the federal government in preventing the spread of the deadly COVID-19 virus rampaging various nations of the world.
According to them, rather than enforce strict measures that would help contain the spread of the virus, they believe that the federal government through the on-going registration of the National Identification Number, is championing the spread of the virus.
With the record of confirmed cases of COVID-19 as disclosed by the Nigeria Center for Disease Control, NCDC, it is obvious that the second wave of the virus is more life threatening.
Currently, the nation’s land of promise, Akwa Ibom State, which was less affected compared to other states during the first spread, appears to be suffering the worse hit this time around as about 255 persons were recorded to have tested positive of the virus last week.
Speaking in an interview with TNN, a renowned medical practitioner, Dr. Jerry Fubara believes that from all indication, the federal government does not believe that there is COVID-19 in the country.
“I am so disappointed in the government of today; they say one thing and do another. How can you be risking the lives of people you claim you are protecting like this? You prevent them from going to market to buy food, school, church, places where social distancing can be maintained, yet, force them to embark on such fruitlessly unprepared, unorganized registration. I call it mission to the grave.
“Yes, we are being compelled of course. If not, what is the need of giving deadline, why do we have very few registration centers? Why not appeal to churches, schools to release their building if you cannot afford an umbrella and say everybody register in your village, bring the registration to everyone’s door post.
“Now tell me, with what we see at the various registration centres of NIN, would you say that the Federal Government is fighting COVID-19, would you? Our government has redirected her attention from the virus to the NIN registration, people are dying, the virus is real yet people don’t believe because our government is romancing the situation, an issue as deadly as this.
“Till now, so many people, I mean so many, even the so called educated, enlightened ones still do not believe that there is COVID-19, some say the virus is in other countries but has not entered Nigeria, that government is just playing politics with it, to embezzle money, and I tell you, that is really sad because people are dying seriously, this virus is real and it is killing many, I mean many.”
When asked his last word to the federal government, on possible steps that could help prevent the spread of the virus, the doctor said “I will not advise them, advise government? It’s worse than trying to fill a basket with water, people say pouring water on a duck’s back. The people I will rather speak to are citizens, inhabitants of the country, and my words are very simple, COVID-19 is real, don’t pray to experience it before you believe, do the needful as advised by NCDC and stay safe.”
Also speaking, a community development committee chairman in Obio/Akpor Local Government Area of the state, Victor Dike noted that lockdown may not be ideal.
According to him, “The surest way to contain the virus is to strictly maintain the prescribed covid-19 policies. To me, the ongoing NIMC registration is a show of carelessness in the part of the government.”