Two non-governmental organisations have criticised the measures adopted bynthe federal government as part of the lockdown to curb the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.In their statements on Wednesday, Charles Onunaiju of the Centre for China Studies (CCS) and Nnamdi Ahaiwe of Civil Society Observatory for Constitutional and Legal Compliance (CSOCLC) called for the adoption of local measures to tackle the pandemic. Onunuaiju, who expressed concerns over what he termed fear and panic created over the pandemic, argued that the huge fatalities in Europe and United States as a result of the pandemic are specific to their social life with 86% of deaths being those above 70 years and those with underlying ailments.”While all measures including the unorthodox ones of social distancing, isolation, quarantine and even lockdown, though, to be graduated and targeted, would feature in the range of options to curb, control and contain the spread of the virus, key questions is now to appreciate that scientific research is the most valuable fundamental to confront this kind of strange outbreak,” he said.In the same vein, Ahaiwe argued that the lockdown will add to the burden of Nigerians. He said many countries around the world have tailored their individual response according to what works for them, their circumstances and situations. He alleged that Covid-19 panic in Nigeria was created by persons who want to gain from it to the detriment of poor households and the Nigerian economy. “Still looking at the empirical numbers, the Nigerian Malaria Fact Sheet says there are over 300, 000 deaths from malaria per year compared to about 215, 000 deaths from HIV/AIDS. Malaria and HIV/AIDS alone account for 515,000 deaths each year in Nigeria. By the time you add deaths from typhoid, lassa fever, measles, tuberculosis, road accidents, Boko Haram and other causes, you are talking about millions of deaths from diseases and other preventable causes each year,” he said.”Yet in the three months plus Covid-19 have entered our dictionary, only two people have died of it in Nigeria ans assuming there is massive outbreak, the trajectoryvm figures and data show that probably less than 5,000 people, mostly the elderly and those with underlying conditions would die,” he added.
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