I have a mixed opinion about this, partly because I haven’t been out much since the relaxation, hence I can’t really give a broad take on the level of compliance with the relaxation guidelines from a day to day basis since the lockdown was relaxed. However, I would say my impression hasn’t been too positive from my little experience going out. Last time I stepped out to get essentials, I observed that not everyone or businesses are taking the safety precautions advised to help contain the spread of the virus. Some people were not wearing masks nor keeping safe distance from others. I am also yet to see any enforcement of the guidelines in any form, which is the very thing that puts a hole in the efforts of the government to contain the spread of the virus with the relaxation. Not everyone can be expected to adhere to the given guidelines, because as oddly as it sounds, some people still doubt the existence of the virus. Anyways, I think it’s too early to tell if people are being careful enough. The true test of compliance will be in the coming weeks.
Averagely, the conduct of the people has been a good one. Although there was gross violation of the guidelines in some areas just like we had it in every other countries of the world like Italy and other places. Surging crowd in the banks really shows our zero adoption of the cashless policy in Nigeria. I will beseech the government to increase the level of awareness and sensitization of the people on the virus and the use of face mask.
If we had behaved real and stay in door within the one month period of lockdown, life would have been back to normal and we bid coronavirus farewell but reverse is the case because we are unable to contain it, rather cases kept increasing. I am not satisfied with the level of compliance and government is not handling the situation in the way it is expected of them. They need to be strict with enforcement of the guidelines.
I would say I am not satisfied because many Nigerians do not believe that there is a pandemic due to socio-religious and cultural factor. This, I would say is causing the widespread of the virus. Most people are still going about carrying on with their daily activities, without the use of face mask. This is saddening. We are in for real mess. Whistle blowing is crucial. We are kidding as far as I can see because even the palliative measures now are political because the vulnerable people are not getting the palliative. To win this battle, we must all be ready to sacrifice in no small way.
The lockdown is not meant to be relaxed yet because is a dangerous one. We know the kind of country we live in and we are not coordinated. Imagine when Lagos was on lockdown for five weeks, the numbers of cases keep increasing although minimal, but since the lockdown was partially relaxed, the cases kept rising everyday including other states on a high level. This is a country where people are not coordinated and the government eased off the lockdown without putting the right measures in place. The government is not following up on people the way they are supposed to. Imagine, I travelled from Lagos to Ibadan during the lockdown and I was able to cross the border because I was in the vehicle of a Police officer. What if I had the virus, I would have infected people in Ibadan. Our health facilities in Nigeria are very bad, so tell me how we will all survive if this virus spreads beyond control. I will urge the government to implement another lockdown and order house-to-house test and make test kits available.
Satisfaction is an understatement. If we are not careful the situation will go beyond control because Nigerians are not good at adhering to guidelines and most especially we have problem with social distancing. I personally see people coming out of commercial vehicles in large numbers in the morning without face masks. In fact, the buses are often overloaded. I weep for Nigerians as the number of new cases kept rising every day. To prevent a possible second wave of the virus, there should be sustained efforts at risk communication and community engagement, particularly on the need for sustained adherence to existing public health measures, including hand and respiratory hygiene, as well as social distancing. Though there has been noticeable improvement in Nigeria’s testing capacity with some state governments complementing the efforts of Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), a lot still needs to be done to upscale the testing capacity. If other African nations with far less population figures have been able to conduct more tests, there is no reason Nigeria cannot do much more to enable her have a true reflection of the disease burden as well as limit community transmission. I would suggest that increased attention should be paid to the safety, protection and welfare of medical doctors and other health workers in the public and private health sectors. This will help to boost their morale and halt the unfortunate rise in the number of health workers infected in the course of duty, and the consequent depletion of the health workforce needed to attend to individuals affected by Covid-19 and those who present other medical conditions. Government at all levels should sustain and improve efforts at strengthening the capacity of their health systems and infrastructure, to enable them cope with the burden and also be ready for quality health care delivery in the post-COVID phase. As a way of ensuring that there is less resistance to the prescribed public health measures, there is need for accelerated and equitable distribution of palliative to the vulnerable segments of the Nigerian population across the zones of Nigeria.
Well, relaxation of the lockdown has helped some people especially those that feed on daily income and I am sure it must have reduced crime rate in the communities for now. But looking at the way people adhere to the lay down rules for the relaxation, not everyone is abiding to it because people are not using the face mask the way they should. The commercial buses are not adhering to the number of passengers they are to be carry and those that comply are giving outrageous prices for transport fare which is a burden on the citizens despite fall in fuel price. So, I am not satisfied with the compliance of the people though I can’t really blame them because all that is needed to make things easier are not in place.
Copyright Ships & Ports Ltd. Permission to use quotations from this article is granted subject to appropriate credit given to www.shipsandports.com.ng as the source.