Civil Society Statement On The State Of The Nation & FG’s Response To COVID-19

March 25, 2020

Today, we, the Civil
Society Alliance Against COVID-19 (CSAA COVID-19) received with shock the news
that a number of politicians have been recklessly ignoring measures for
isolation of travellers returning from overseas. Most notably, the Chief of
Staff to President Buhari, and the Governor of Bauchi State, have tested
positive for Covid-19. We are also calling attention to members of the National
Assembly and Governors such as those of Abia, Enugu and Imo who have been seen
at public events well within the period of 14 days since their return from
overseas. Our shock stems from their having reportedly ignored established
safety protocols and breezed past safety checks to which other Nigerians are
routinely subjected. They have exposed an extraordinary swathe of the Nigerian
government and public to risks of infection.

At this time, we
send all of our support and prayers to NCDC, the Ministry of Health, and all of
the medical professionals who must put themselves at risk to address this
situation. We also stand with all of those who have been in contact with
politicians who have acted recklessly and must now endure testing, isolation,
and probably repeated screening along with their families and loved ones.

We now call on all
Nigerians to support those who are now able to credibly lead to calmly take the
necessary steps to protect our country. With the Chief of Staff’s actions, Mr
President, the Vice-President, our ministers, governors, international partners
and those leading the fight against this pandemic have been compromised. These
are very difficult times and we must learn a lesson as a nation and face this
crisis together with unity and determination. All those who have created risks
must immediately cooperate with the authorities and not in any way slow the
exercise in damage limitation. 

Nigeria has to now
plan for the worst, which is a significant number of confirmed cases of corona
spread across the country and revealing themselves over the coming 2-4 weeks.
This will require an extraordinary scaling up of the capacity of the NCDC and
state task forces. It will require the government, the private sector, civil society
and our religious bodies to work together to ensure that testing takes place,
preventive humanitarian response is coordinated, and that measures across the
board are ramped up.

As we make this
call to action, we demand that attention is paid to the most vulnerable in our
society. While urgent measures need to be taken, they must be well thought
through and not harm low income earners and those whose very survival could
easily be threatened by badly administered lockdowns. The Federal Government
and States must immediately formulate and engage teams that include
non-government actors capable of collaborating on this extraordinary challenge.

Signed by;

Civil Society Alliance Against COVID-19 (CSAA COVID-19)

  1. African
    Women Empowerment & Childcare Initiative
  2. Amazing
    Grace Inspirations
  3. Centre for
    Women’s Health and Information (CEWHIN)
  5. Citizens
    Centre for Integrated Development and Social Rights (CCIDESOR)
  6. Citizen’s
  7. Dinidari
  8. Dorothy
    Njemanze Foundation
  9. Education
    as a Vaccine (EVA)
  10. EiE
  11. Emerge
    Women Development Initiative
  12. FAME
  13. Global
  14. Halliru
    Memorial Youth Development & Empowerment Initiative
  15. House of
  16. Initiative
    for Research, Innovation and Advocacy in Development (IRIAD)
  17. Justice
    & Empowerment Initiative (JEI)
  18. Mac-Jim
  19. Molluma
    Medico-Legal Centre
  20. Nigeria
  21. NoMore234NG
  22. Onomese
  23. Responsible
    Citizenship and Human Development Initiative
  24. SBM
  25. Sesor
    Empowerment Foundation
  26. SilverchipFox
  27. Stakeholders
    Democracy Network (SDN)
  28. Tap
    Nitiative for Citizens Development
  29. TechHerNG
  30. Women
    Advocates Research & Documentation Centre (WARDC)
  31. Women
    Arise Development & Humanitarian Initiative
  32. Working
    Moms Africa
  33. Abiodun
  34. Chidi
    Anslem Odinkalu
  35. Gloria
    Mabeiam Ballason
  36. J I Oyegun
  37. Mojubaolu
    Olufunke Okome
  38. Nana

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