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COVID-19: ICT expert commends FG’s lockdown directive



An Information and Communications Technology (ICT) expert, Mr Jide Awe, on Monday said that the lockdown directive by the Federal Government was the right step toward containing the COVID-19 outbreak in Nigeria.

Awe, also the Chief Executive Officer of Jidaw Systems Ltd., made this known in an interview with the Nigeria News Agency in Lagos.

The ICT expert noted that the lockdown was a step in the right direction as it had been confirmed as a globally-accepted practice that when the populace stayed at home, it stopped the spread of the virus.

Awe, however, said that in the case of Nigeria the lockdown needed to be well planned to ensure all states were working together for the same purpose, even if they were not all locked down at the same time.

He noted that in addition, there must be meaningful and tangible support to ease the pains individuals and organizations would experience during the lockdown.

“Many Micro and Small Enterprises depend on daily income generation. Government should provide appropriate support and relief packages.

“Infrastructure provision must be top notch to serve people at home. Unfortunately during this lockdown there are places that lack power supply and even regular water supply.

“Furthermore, it should be noted that a partial lockdown may not give us the desired results. It can only be effective if it is faithfully implemented and enforced,’’ he noted.

Awe noted that at this period people should not be allowed to still converge en masse in bars, pedestrian bridges and vehicles all over.

Talking on measures to contain the virus outbreak, he said the government needed to build more well-equipped isolation centres.

 “It is also essential for the government to equip the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) and all individuals and organisations involved in the response effort with the necessary Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) and other critical materials.

“We need to increase awareness within the populace. Many still appear unaware of the enormity of the challenge COVID-19 poses as well as their expected response to protect themselves and stop the spread.

“Also the government needs to maintain the travel ban while monitoring the spread internationally,’’ Awe said.

He added that it was essential for the government to invest time, effort and resources in building capacity and creating innovative and tech-based solutions to support the response to the pandemic.

Edited By: Adeleye Ajayi