Action Democratic Party (ADP) on Tuesday commended President Muhammadu Buhari over his decision to partially lift the lockdown order placed on the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), Abuja, Lagos and Ogun states to curb the spread of the deadly Coronavirus in the country while putting additional measures in place to address the spread of the pandemic.
The party, while commending the president, however, drew his attention to the nation’s dwindling economy in the midst of the challenges of fall in the price of crude oil globally, posed by the pandemic, which has claimed over 40 lives in the country, including that of Malam Abba Kyari, the Chief of Staff (CoS) to Buhari, with hundreds now in isolation receiving treatment.
The president, as part of his Monday evening nationwide broadcast, lifted the restriction of movement within Lagos, Ogun and Abuja, effective May 2nd, 2020, but still placed ban on interstate movement of non- essential services.
ADP, in a statement signed by its National Publicity Secretary, Prince Adeoye Adelaja, said it was important that while efforts were being put in place to contain the widespread of the virus, the nation’s economy must not be neglected as “it will not be sustainable in the long run, to lockdown either partially or totally in perpetuity.”
“We are also calling on the Federal Government led by President Buhari, to summon economic management team, to find a way out, on how the economy can recover because it will be disastrous if measures are not in place to support public and private businesses, post COVID-19 economically, amidst this falling oil price, which Nigeria is largely dependent on for its revenue.
“The president agrees with us as he also has said that Nigerians are losing their jobs, businesses are collapsing. It should not just stop at his media broadcast, the government must find a way to support those businesses to ensure they are revived, jobs are gained and the nation returns to its feet economically.
“ADP also charges the government to put in a concerted effort in order to turn away from oil or rent-seeking kind of economy. Our country is hugely endowed with many natural and human resources, which we can leverage.
“We need to bring back our industries, in various sectors, such as innovations and technology, textile, Agriculture, production of goods, mining, etc and begin to export, instead of importing our basic needs,” ADP argued.
This was just as the party called for an urgent search for homegrown solutions to the pandemic, demanding that the nation’s University and medical colleges should come forward to help at this critical time, with research on how the pandemic can be halted.
According to ADP, the Federal Government must be aware that countries, including Madagascar, Ghana, and few other on the continent have not relied on the Western world before going ahead to find solutions to the problem of COVID-19, urging it to as a matter of urgency swing into actions.
“Nigeria must quickly look for alternative solutions, preferably, our homegrown solutions, to stop Coronavirus from encroaching and killing more of our people, calling on all the nation’s University and medical colleges to help at this critical time, with research on how the pandemic can be halted.
“The Federal government must be aware that, Madagascar, Ghana, and few other African countries, including Oyo State in Nigeria, has not relied on the western world, before going ahead to find solutions to the problem of COVID19, ADP is, therefore, tasking the Federal Government, as a matter of urgency to swing into actions,” the party said.
The party said it was indeed alarmed by the large numbers of people reported dead in Kano State, calling on the Federal Government to declare a State of Emergency in the health sector in the state, and also investigate the root cause of death of such large numbers of people, with a way of finding solutions on how it can be stopped.
The party, while noting that though the state governor, Abdullahi Ganduje and various leaders in the state said the deaths cannot be generally linked to COVID-19, expressed its readiness to continue to follow up with the Federal and state governments over this matter, even as it assured Kano residents not to panic.
“Although, various leaders in the state, including the governor, Abdullahi Ganduje, have said that, the deaths cannot be generally linked to COVID-19, but we want all Kano residents, and our members there to know that, our party will continue to follow up with the Federal and state governments, over this matter, assuring them not to panic,” the party assured.
ADP said it was commendable that Nigerians were updated with figures of infected persons, casualties recorded, and other index cases on a daily basis, adding that “it is equally important that general solution(s), must be found and announced to the people, so that people can have confidence that, everything will soon be over.”
“The Director-General of National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), Dr Chikwe Ihekweazu, through his official Twitter handle announced a shortage in the test kits, after testing about 10,000 Nigerians, out of a population of over 180million people, which shows that our own solution must be found immediately, as it is being done in Senegal, producing test kits and 3D ventilators locally, if at all we want this problem to be over soon.
“The president only stated what appears to be intermediate efforts in combating COVID19 during his broadcast, but Nigeria must develop its own strategy on how to roll back this virus, and have a COVID19 free nation,” the party affirmed.
The party, however, urged all Nigerians to keep following the guidelines provided by the National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC), such as washing their hands with soap or alcohol-based hand sanitizers, maintaining social distancing, avoiding crowded environment, and keep using face/nose masks to avert the spread.
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