Covid-19-: Huriwa Carpets President Buhari On The Indefinite Lockdown:
The Prominent Civil Rights Advocacy group-: HUMAN RIGHTS WRITERS ASSOCIATION OF NIGERIA (HURIWA) has condemned unreservedly the speech circulated by President Muhammadu Buhari purporting to have ordered an indefinite lockdown in its attempt to contain the spread of the CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC IN NIGERIA.
The Rights group said the indefinite shut down of Nigeria and the rigid language adopted by President Muhammadu Buhari in passing the information through his Special Adviser on Media and Publicity shows that there are still some vestiges of the military dictatorial hangover surrounding the running of governmental affairs by President Muhammadu Buhari who was a former military dictator and who has decided to cut himself away and hide away in the coccoon of the Fortified mansion away from the Nigerian People and is only appearing like a village mosquerade during annual yam festivals which is a sign of a clear failure of charismatic leadership which we need in these times of health emergency. HURIWA accused the government of betraying poor Nigerians by failing to give them any palliatives in the real sense of it like what is obtainable in Australia wheteby each citizen is oaid $700 USD weekly.
HURIWA accused President Muhammadu Buhari and his political task force on COVID-19 PANDEMIC headed by the politician Boss Mustapha of Copying and pasting the measures put in place by many civilised and highly sophisticated nations of the WEST which have clearly made transparent and accountable provisions of reliefs and palliatives for their WESTERN citizens including a range of systematic ECONOMIC RECOVERY AND GROWTH PLANS for the medium and small businesses that are affected by the prolonged LOCKDOWN.
HURIWA stated that there is no justification or any scientific evidence to provide a balanced and rationally objective reasons for the indefinite lockdown by President Muhammadu Buhari copying dubiously and dishonestly the policies put in place by such advanced societies like the United States of America or United Kingdom when it is so clear that the Federal Government of Nigeria for now has failed to disclose scientifically to Nigerians the immediate, short and long term strategies and actionable templates that the government is implementing to effectively and efficiently contain the spread of the CORONAVIRUS PANDEMIC IN NIGERIA just as the Rights group said it is highly UNSCIENTIFIC for President Muhammadu Buhari to shut down the Country on the nebulous ground that our economic and social life can only be restarted at the whims and caprices of some persons he whimsically identified as his scientists who are about the only Nigerians living ostentatiously off the financial resources of the nation whilst millions of disadvantaged people are wallowing in dreadful and an unmitigated economic disaster due to the uncertainties of the ongoing lockdown in Nigeria.
HURIWA stated that: " We subscribe to the expert opinion of Alan Whiteside that the current global public response can best be described as mild hysteria. On the Economic side the scholar stated that there has been some recovery, but the markets can best be described as jittery."
HURIWA also faulted the blindfolded and totally incomprehensible decision of President Muhammadu Buhari to lockdown the nation in an indefinite mode given that even the WORLD HEALTH ORGANISATION clearly stated that there are certain category of people that are more prediposed to the COVID-19 ailment when the WHO director general told his 500 000 Twitter followers: “If you are 60+, or have an underlying condition like cardiovascular disease, a respiratory condition or diabetes, you have a higher risk of developing severe #COVID19. Try to avoid crowded areas, or places where you might interact with people who are sick”. Effectively the message is don’t go to the theatre or take public transport, but you are probably OKAY in a restaurant."
"HURIWA is worried that the grave human rights implications of locking down hungry, jobless, and desperate populations of mostly youngsters who are basically outside the age bracket of those categories that the World Health organisation regard as at risk group, is tantamount to the invitation of an immenent civil unrest because it is inevitable that rather than millions of citizens to stay at their homes without electricity and without foods and die they will rather pour out on the streets to cause social chaos and anarchy. This government and the officials responsible for the re-distribution of the GOVERNMENT's incentives and palliatives have failed to render proper accounts just as out of the over 90 million poor Nigerians not more than 100 families have actually benefitted from the assistance and food reliefs ordered to be re-distributed by President Muhammadu Buhari. Nigeria needs to design strategies for the gradual easing of the lockdown to stop deaths from starvation or eventual social unrests which may not augur well for CONSTITUTIONAL DEMOCRACY, RESPECT FOR HUMAN RIGHTS and the rule of law". HURIWA has also urged the Federal government to publish the national health policy and strategy on the containment of the COVID-19 AILMENT in Nigeria and make a general guideline on the use of PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT TO WARD OFF THE COVID-19 AILMENT.
HURIWA recalled that the Statement by President Muhammadu Buhari ordering indefinite lockdown will lead to economic collapse even as the Rights group said there were inherent contradictions in his speech some of which are reproduced as follows: "We realize that today, there will be sons and daughters unable to visit their parents, and elders that are isolated from young ones. And there will be those who live day-to-day, eating as they earn, who face real and present suffering.No elected government could ask more of the citizens of the country that elected them than today we ask of you. But we must ask you - once more - to observe restrictions on movement where they are in place, and follow the instructions of our scientists and medical advisers: stay home, wash your hands, save lives.
The freedoms we ask you to willingly forsake today will only last as long as our scientific advisers declare they are necessary. But they are essential - world over - to halt and defeat the spread of this virus.For those who suffer most egregiously, the Government has announced multiple measures to assist: 70,000 tonnes of grain is being released from the National Strategic Grain Reserves for distribution to those in most need; distribution of small cash payments are also being made, and will continue to be made by the federal government in the states and local government areas.We ask you to listen and follow public announcements via the mass media for instructions as to how to receive this government support - and learn of more public assistance."
HURIWA said these above speech are obviously deficient in logic and are full of pitfalls and are so incoherent to an extent that the PRESIDENT displayed an unacceptable level of insensitivity and feigned ignorance of the avalanche of poor and starving citizens some of whom are already been attacked by armed robbers in Ogun and Lagos and dispossessed of their cash whilst the police are busy violating the human rights of innocent Nigerians who would normally leave THEIR homes to find some foods to sustain their lives.