Nigerians Should Trust Science, Not Fiction – Buhari

April 2, 2020

“Yesterday, the esteemed Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka
made comments on the legal status and description of 14-day lockdown announced
by President Muhammadu Buhari.

“Professor Soyinka is not a medical professor. His
qualifications are in English literature, and his prizes are for writing books
and plays for theatres. He is of course entitled to his opinions – but that is
exactly all they are: semantics, not science. They cannot – and should not –
therefore be judged as professional expertise in this matter in any shape or

“Across the world – from parts of the United States and
China, to countries including the United Kingdom and France, government –
mandated lockdowns are in place to slow and defeat the spread of coronavirus.
All have been declared, and all have been made necessary, based on medical and
scientific evidence. The guidance of the Nigerian Government’s medical
specialists is to advise the same.

“Professor Soyinka has also declared, doubtless based on his
specialism as a playwright, that:  “We
are not in a war emergency’’.

Eminent scientists say otherwise:

“Dr Richard Hatchett, Head of the International Coalition
for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (and former Director of the US Biomedical
Advanced Research and Development Authority) has said, ‘War is an appropriate

“Professor Anthony Fauci, Director of the United States
National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and member of the White
House Coronavirus Task Force has said of the battle against the pandemic: ‘It’s
almost like the fog of war’.

“As for the legality of the lock down, the Government of
Nigeria’s primary duty in law and action is the defence of the people of
Nigeria. We face a global pandemic. Nigeria is now affected. The scientific and
medical guidance the world over is clear: the way to defeat the virus is to
halt its spread through limitation of movement of people.

“Perhaps Wole Soyinka may write a play on the coronavirus
pandemic, after this emergency is over. In the meantime, we ask the people of
Nigeria to trust the words of our doctors and scientists – and not fiction
writers – at this time of national crisis.’’

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