Extending the lockdown further is like hunger/stress- induced mass genocide.
More than 90% of Nigerians have no assets or savings to live on for any further prolonged lockdown on their own finances.
There is no social insurance (welfare system) in place in Nigeria. Less than 10% of banks accounts have balances of (#300,000) and above, and the these account for more than 90% of total deposits. Hence more than 90% of bank accounts have 5% of total deposits.
Only 2% of bank accounts have #500,000 and above. Therefore about 80% of the population are living from hand to mouth on daily toil and hassle.
Perishable products of poor Nigerian farmers that need public transport to reach the cities will be wasted.
Many farmers that need transport to their farms, processing units, silos, and other places will not be able to do so. Early season farm land preparations and planting of egusi melon are already disorganized. Food prices will rise in the coming months.
Imported farm inputs machinery and spare parts will be difficult to come by. Improved planting materials from our Agricultural Research Institutes, National Seed Council, and Universities will not be forthcoming for this planting season. Even after lifting the lockdowns/border closure, it may take months for normalcy to return in Nigeria.
Hence, governments in Nigeria are adviced to dismantle lockdown/border closures against this current covid-19 pandemic. Governments in Nigeria should however ensure that our public health facilities are made functional.
Professionals, religious leaders, CSOs, and community leaders should be mobilized by governments to approach our local herbal medical experts, health research institutes and Universities for sustainable (not ad-hoc) solution.
lt should be learning-by-doing, also as presently handled in the Industrialised nations for now. In Nigeria, we should still be keeping to social distancing, avoiding public gathering, facilities in public places, hand washing with sanitizers, face mask, hand gloves, and maintain the slogan.
Stay at home, if you can or smartly go to work, if you must.
All public transport vehicles – taxi, buses, trains, airplanes to be disinfected before use and for all passengers to wear face masks and hand gloves, and with hand sanitizers.
Nigeria’s socio- economic structure can not afford to sustain the lockdown indefinitely. Thank you.