A traditional Chief in Delta State, Comrade (Chief) Mulade Sheriff, the Ibe-Soremowei of the ancient Gbaramatu Kingdom, has called on Nigerians to obey the sit-at-home order of the Federal and State Governments aimed at containing the spread of COVID-19 in Nigeria. Chief Mulade, who is the National Coordinator of a renowned peace, human rights and sustainable environment advocating NGO, the Center for Peace and Environmental Justice, CEPEJ, made the call at a press briefing cum food distribution exercise on Wednesday, April 8, 2020, in Warri, Delta State. It is worthy of note that the Center embarked on the distribution of food stuffs, hand sanitizers and buckets amongst others, to compliment Government's efforts at all levels. Worried over the rise in COVID-19 cases to 254 in the country as reported by NCDC on Wednesday, Chief Mulade said the only way to combat the spread was to adhere strictly to the proactive measures of the Federal Government, the National Assembly and the State Govts by sitting at home during the lockdown and by obeying the rules and guidelines of the Health Ministries and the NCDC.
While commending President Buhari and his team for their roles so far, the NGO Coordinator said since COVID-19 has no cure for now, the only sure way to contain the spread of the virus was the lockdown directive by the President and the State Governors. Chief Mulade, an Ambassador of Peace, advised Nigerians to obey all the directives and meticulously follow the instructions of various health agencies for a win-win situation. Comparing the statistics of COVID-19 cases of other countries with that of Nigeria, the CEPEJ boss commended the Federal Government and the NCDC for their efforts at flattening the spread curve of the deadly virus in Nigeria, and commended all Nigerians for complying with the Government lockdown order, despite the usual communal life among them. He enjoined Nigerians to appreciate the Federal Government for the distribution of test kits, drugs, food, amongst others to hospitals and isolation centres across the Federation. He urged Nigerians to maintain personal and environmental hygiene by washing their hands regularly with soap and running water, cleaning frequently used items and surfaces, using alcohol based sanitizers, wearing of face masks and hand gloves, and practising social distancing, amongst others, to curb the killer virus COVID-19 from spreading in the country. He appealed to wealthy Nigerians to assist by providing medical facilities and drugs to hospitals, isolation centres, community health centers, and food stuffs to the less privileged as palliatives to cushion the economic effects of the lockdown on the people. He suggested that at the expiration of the first phase of the lockdown, the Federal Government, the leadership of the National Assembly, State Governors and other relevant authorities should, as a matter of urgent public importance, re-strategize and adopt proactive steps to cushion the suffering of Nigerians and other nationals, and then embark on one full week nationwide lockdown to carry out a thorough door-to-door COVID-19 test on everyone during the lockdown period, so as to ascertain the actual number of cases in the country for immediate medical attention, in order to eradicate the deadly global pandemic from Nigeria and save more lives. He said, if the Federal Government and Ministry of Health could carry out nationwide door-to-door vaccination of children to prevent them from polio and other diseases, then it is also possible to do same with this more deadly COVID-19 virus.