By Tony Ajero
A key lesson in this global experience is to be ahead of the Pandemic’s curve on all fronts. Consequently, a fundamental question is ‘what have other countries done in similar circumstances?’ By studying and adapting the strategies and actions of those who are ahead of us in this Pandemic’s curve, we can avoid many trial-and-error efforts which amount to less infections and deaths.
On the food front, one good news is that shops and markets in locked-down states can open between 10a.m and 2p.m daily. This is to enable availability foodstuffs and essentials. Good idea, especially as we have seen how the populace reacted in countries with similar economic indices. For instance, in the Philippines, one ghetto population rioted for food!
More than 70% of our 200 million population is said to be living below the poverty line – about two dollars or N800 daily. This is aggravated by the fact that these trifles are earned daily. No savings to fall back on. There is hardly any social support. Result: without trading and income, hunger rules.
While Lagos state has set up markets in schools, feedback is that prices are double the usual rates. Worse still, the rush for these items brooks no ‘social distancing’. Multiple jeopardy, isn’t it? Earlier today in Warri, a soldier was alleged to have killed one Joseph Pessu for being on the street. What a sad, sad story. Must our story be always negatively different?
This brings us to the real question: where is sustenance money coming from for the poor? There is a suggestion that some of these billion naira donations be channelled directly to the people. Time for Government, Churches, Mosques, Banks, Telecoms firms and others to support the common-man.
Are We Learning From Others’ Experiences?
The U.S.A is mulling the issue of total shut-down? Malawi, our sister-country, currently has a zero-level infection because it shut its borders early. At what point should we seriously considering a nation-wide stay-at-home rather than this state-by-state piece-meal approach? India is sending 4,000 health workers into a slum to test the inhabitants.
Lastline: The Ministry of Health’s tweet asking Elon Musk’s donation of “100 – 500 ventilators to assist with Covid-19 cases arising every day in Nigeria” drew the ire of many Nigerians before it was deleted. Backgrounded on Musk’s clear directions that the ventilators are not to be stored but for current and urgent needs, the question arises: do we need those ventilators currently or do we have such number of cases needing ventilators? Remember, ventilators are used for those at the end-stage of the disease who require aid to breathe. 100 – 500 ventilators!
Spain’s death toll crosses 10,000!
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