Lagos, Nigeria, March 27, 2020
Amid the current COVID-19 outbreak in Nigeria—the Nigeria Network of NGOs is following with appreciation, the efforts of the Nigeria Center for Disease Control, Federal Ministry of Health, Lagos State Government, Private Sector, Philanthropists and Civil Society Organisations to curb the spread of the virus.
The members of the Network welcomes encouraging developments coming from the handling of the outbreak including the measures being taken by governments at the sub-national level and recognises that this represents a significant step towards ending the pandemic. Members also welcomed the measures being considered by the Federal Government as announced by the Minister of Information and Culture on March 26, 2020.
With the current status of the world right now and the unprecedented spread of COVID-19, this is the right time for Nigeria to enforce a total lock-down. We are increasingly concerned about the impact a further delay in locking down the country could have on the spread of the disease considering our weak healthcare system.
Understanding that measures to address the COVID-19 pandemic must be properly weighed and taken seriously, following stakeholder-wide consultations with its members, experts, thought leaders, trends analysis and results of an opinion poll, the Nigeria Network of NGOs encourages the Federal Government of Nigeria to consider a total lock-down of the country for 14 days.
We understand the impact a lock-down would have on the vulnerable and under-served communities. However, this is a decision that prioritizes citizens’ welfare, safety and social responsibility. The resulting scenario from a lack of timely decision to implement a total lock-down could be seen from ongoing spread of the outbreak in the United States and Britain—world powers with better healthcare systems.
In times like this, our resilience as citizens will come to the fore as can be seen from our history. When the spread is curtailed, we must now as a nation prioritise our national identity management and banking system including a robust social protection floor to capture as many citizens as possible and address the fallout from the pandemic.
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About the Nigeria Network of NGOs.
The Nigeria Network of NGOs (NNNGO) is the first generic membership body for civil society organizations in Nigeria that facilitates effective advocacy on issues of poverty and other developmental issues. For 28 years, we have worked to give non-profits in the country the needed support to keep their doors open and to serve millions of communities, families, individuals and variety of causes that critically need their intervention. www.nnngo.org
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