CMDA Nigeria Expert Opinion Series 1.03
A CMDA Nigeria commentary on emerging issues
COVID-19 RESPONSE 3: GOVERNMENT INTERVENTIONS AND THE COVID-19 RESPONSE: STRIKING A BALANCE
Globally, governments are scaling up their country’s preparedness to rapidly identify, diagnose and treat cases while following up with contacts where feasible. This strategy is in line with the WHO expert recommendations and requires persons to maintain physical distancing in order to limit human to human transmission of the disease. This would involve restricting social gatherings, large groups and meetings.
The Nigerian government at the federal and state levels has demonstrated great leadership through various strategic emergency response interventions. However, it is important to ensure that while safeguarding the lives of citizens, our interventions are not counterproductive. Recently, state governments in Nigeria have risen to this challenge, developing emergency response plans and establishing isolation and treatment centers. While this is laudable, we may not require grand commissioning ceremonies for interventions like this that would be attended by scores of people. This is because ceremonies of this magnitude at this time can be counterproductive as they defeat the aim of physical distancing to reduce the number of times people come in close contact with each other.
- Grand commissioning of projects and interventions may be unnecessary at this time, instead pictures and videos of interventions could be taken, published and disseminated for public view.
- Governments as leaders must adhere to expert recommendations on curbing the spread of the virus, these include limiting human to human transmission by maintaining physical distancing among other recommendations.
06 April 2020