Some residents of Kaduna have expressed divergent views on President Muhammadu Buhari’s Sunday broadcast on the Federal Government’s response to the deadly Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
While some residents lauded the response so far, others were of the view that the government was slow in taking drastic action to protect the citizens.
The residents also said in separate interviews with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Monday that the palliative measures outlined by President Buhari was not enough to address the plight of the less privileged.
Faisal Salisu, a student, noted that the country was at a crossroad between huger and the dreaded contagious Covid-19 that threatens the existence of the human race.
Salisu applauded the response of the federal government and other efforts to prevent further spread of the virus, noting that attention must be targeted first at ensuring that Nigerians are alive and safe.
According to him, the government efforts to prevent further spread of the virus is the best, adding that issues around hunger and economic hardship would be addressed later.
“I sympathize with the government in this crucial moment because even the most advanced countries of the world were shattered by the deadly virus,” he said.
He, however, said that the government ought to have ordered the closure of all motor parks and prevent inter-state movement to curb the virus from getting to states with no single case at the moment.
He added that, as long as the country’s roads were still open for people to move from one state to another, Nigerians would remain at risk of being infected.
“If the government had lockdown the country on time, the rate of transmission would have been very minimal.
“However, the federal government should fund research institutes to develop a vaccine to combat the virus and desist from the overreliance on foreign countries for the cure,” Salisu said.
He further expressed disappointment that President Buhari’s speech did not say anything about efforts to cater for the children of health officials that put their lives on the line to protect the rest of Nigerians.
Also, Abdullahi Fari, an entrepreneur, said that the presidential directive to lockdown Lagos, Ogun and Abuja would help to prevent further spread of the virus, particularly to other states.
Fari said that Nigeria’s response as outlined by president Buhari was among the best in the developing countries and should be applauded and supported to succeed.
He called on Nigerians to support the government in the fight against the virus by adhering to the directives of the National Centre for Disease and Control (NCDC) on good hygiene practices and minimal human contact.
For Aliyu Kallah, the federal government’s plan to deploy relief materials to vulnerable people in Abuja and Lagos communities was “very sketchy and limited”.
Kallah noted that the intervention ought to be nationwide, stressing that the effect was not only in Abuja and Lagos but across the country where there was some form of restrictions of movement.
He said that the total lockdown in Kaduna State has already begun to have its toll on the poor and vulnerable and urged the governments to do something about it and fast.
Similarly, Amos Kadanga, a teacher, also said that the shutdown of the county’s border and airports ought to have been done earlier to avert importation of the virus from infected countries.
Kadanga equally said that although there was reasonable compliance to the lockdown order across the states, the current hunger ravaging the poor and vulnerable in such states would soon push them out of their homes.
He urged the federal and states governments to distribute food and other necessities to the poor to avert the impending disregard to the lockdown order in the principle of self-preservation.
Vivian Inyang, a student, also said that the president’s speech did not say anything on efforts to carry out an awareness campaign on good hygiene practices and other preventive measures in rural communities.
She also urged the federal government to clarify how it intends to utilize the donations for the COVID-19 emergency intervention fund.