Nigeria May Witness Exponential Increase, Another Lockdown— NCDC - THE ENCOUNTER NEWS

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Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Nigeria May Witness Exponential Increase, Another Lockdown— NCDC

NCDC DG, Dr. Chikwe
Ebube Berechi 
ABUJA - The Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) has warned that there might be possible spike in cases of COVID-19 infec­tions and the imposition of another lockdown in the country unless Nigerians abide by the guidelines.
Dr. Chikwe Ihekweazu, Director General (DG) of the NCDC, made this observation during the Presidential Task Force Briefing on COVID-19, following the easing of restric­tions on Monday.
He further alerted that the Federal Government might be left with no other option than to reorder the restriction on movement, saying the guide­line that was put in place for easing the lockdown were be­ing abused.
“Today, some of the mea­sures have been abused. Initial reports are not too pleasing across the country, and this is to join both the Secretary of the Federal Gov­ernment and the Honourable Minister to really appeal to everyone across the country.
“When we say take re­sponsibility this, yes, we are addressing individuals, but we really need to address cor­porate Nigerians.
“One of the biggest groups that were allowed to restart business today was banks. But many banks have limited the number of branches that are opened.
“There is a benefit of doubt but when you limit the num­ber of branches that open, everybody goes to the one branch that is open, and that becomes counter-productive. So, there is only so much we can do.
“We can produce all the guidelines in the world, we can preach, attend TVs, we can do press conferences, if organisations are not going to come up and support the implementation of these measures and help us manage the risks, and focus on a risks-based approach – because it’s not the guidelines per se.
“It is the thinking behind it. How do we want to manage and mitigate the risk of expo­sure, the risk of transmission in every group?
“Today, we might forgive a little bit because it was the first day. We will have infec­tions because of what hap­pened today, no doubt about that.
“But how can we learn from the mistakes of today into tomorrow, next tomor­row, so by Friday, hopefully, we have normalised some of these things.
“Yes, we knew today would be a problem. Everybody here knew today would be a prob­lem, because for the first time, people were let out of their homes.
“But now they are out, seeing the sunlight again, the challenge for us, because as a society, is how do we now or­ganise ourselves to mitigate these risks, to limit trans­mission from each other, so that, yes, we might have a few extra infections today and tomorrow, but what we don’t want is an explosion of new infections.
“If we do have that explo­sion, then, there would be almost no choice left for the leadership of the country than to ask all of us to go back into our homes.
“So, for the benefit of hav­ing a few hours a day of com­ing out to reopen parts of the economy, there is a price to pay and that price is that we organise ourselves to do this safely.”

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