For those still thinking the Corona virus is not real, it is likely you would be living on a different planet. A lot of people feel there is no such thing as corona virus in Nigeria. My bike driver once told me that all the people been dichrged by the NCDC were patients with either malaria or thyphoid fever. Let me state it straight here, we are at war! The world battles a common enemy. An enemy so tiny that the eyes can’t see it. Yet, we have to fight it. It is easier to fight a visible enemy than one you can’t see. Fighting an enemy that is visible means understanding its strategy, movement, position, etc. But, how in the world can one develop a strategy to combat an enemy one can’t see with the hope of winning the battle? If we can answer that question, then there is a slight hope of victory.
Before the COVID-19 pandemic, it used to be the norm for our government officials and the elites to access healthcare abroad while they allow the weak and poor to grapple with dysfunctional healthcare system here. No one seems to be flying anymore. No government official seems to be seeking healthcare outside the shores of this country anymore. Why. Maybe they just realised how important it is to patronise homemade products. Lol. The Covid-19 seems to be resetting this nation, in a way.
The case is exacerbating. The curve is yet to flatten. The Nigeria healthcare system can’t afford an explosive outbreak as such been experienced in more organised parts of the world like the US, the UK, Italy, Spain, France, etc. The scary part is, a carrier of the coronavirus can be asymptomatic hence, the social distance and all guidelines to protect one and loved ones are of utmost importance.
The NCDC has warned that we are nearing community transmission stage. This is a serious concern. We simply can’t handle what’s happening there. At this point, we might need to call on our men of God to pray as we can only seek the intervention of God to see us through this pandemic as a nation.
Looking at once again the situation of things in the US and other more organised countries with better healthcare facilities, it is clear that Nigeria’s case migh not end well if continually handled terribly. Some things are easier to see in others than in yourself. Sad, we don’t learn from the mistakes of others despite initial warnings of the looming danger.
The lock down extension
On the 13 of April, it was announced that people would stay indoor for another two weeks. There is always a higher price to pay if one do not take some time to prepare ahead of every situation. The aftermath of the lock down is intense hunger. The populace are ready to hit the road. The masses feel they can take their chances with the Covid-19 as a number of people are being discharged according to the NCDC but with hunger, you can’t take any chance with that. If the lock down extends further as the reality of that is glaring, the masses might protest. If you look at the countries that failed to heed the warnings of authorities regarding social distancing, you could almost predict Nigeria’s future and, is not pretty. There is no way one would have a sound sleep thinking about such fate. We seriously can’t afford to slowly bleed out. We need to do something fast to save ourselves.
Healthcare system and health care workers
The health care workers are in no doubt the most important part of the resistance. We need to begin to ask ourselves necessary questions like, how do we protect the health care workers, the people at the centre of this pandemic? When you reach the rock bottom, what other option do you have. Our only option is to win, we cannot lose this, else we are finished. But just how can we achieve this victory that seems to have eluded the world, with a dilapidated government, without the adequate back up and immediate support from the multinationals? If we fail to protect the health care workers, then we are eternally doomed.
The people are dying of hunger!
As stated earlier, the masses are ready to hit the road. Since the lock down, hunger seems to be killing people more. Though, there hasn’t been any reported case of such that we are aware of. Millions of Nigerians lack food, income and essential necessities for survival as the lock down continues. The fear of inability to feed and provide for families during the lock down is on the rise as most peoples means of livelihood and sustenance is through daily earnings. How do you begin to convince such people to stay home without provision? There hasn’t so far been any noticeable measure to prevent this pandemic from destroying the lives of the poorest and vulnerable people. If the corona virus does not kill, hunger will, as trying to stock up necessities has been an issue due to an increase in food prices. Research shows that seventy two percent of the informal sector are poor and these folks, merely struggling daily to survive are devastatingly hit by the lock down. Before now, any form of disruption to meet their daily needs has a huge and significant impact on the ability to meet their daily needs, how much more, this day. As business cater for their workers, who then will cater for the informal sector?
If you are not part of the solution then you are part of the problem, note that you can be part of a problem by just doing nothing significant.
Since 2005 that shoprite opened its first retail outlet in Lagos, it has launched additional 25 stores across eight states in Nigeria including Abuja, employing more than 2000 people of which 99% are Nigerians. Let us stop there. That’s a success story. This story could not have been possible or successful if the Nigerian masses who take pleasure in shopping didn’t aid it. Shoprite states that through their community development it has supported projects in various Nigeria communities especially those focusing on hunger relief, women empowerment and skills development.
Let’s dive into the hunger relief project. It might have done as stated but am guessing it did it when people didn’need it as much. Now, we have hungry masses who truly need the hunger relief project, healthcare workers that need to be supported sufficiently. This is a period where every action or relief program matters and as a retail store that sells more essential commodities, shoprite should see itself as an organisation that played a key role in assisting Nigerians during the fight to defeat the Covid-19 pandemic. A hungry man is an angry man. If this issue is not looked into with immediate support, the unrest in most parts of Lagos will continue. Don’t wait. The masses want to see you make an indelible mark at this point of needs.
More of the multinationals will be called out. Stay tuned
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