A Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN), Mr. Sebastine Hon has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to take other critical steps necessary to stop COVID-19 from destroying the country.
In a statement he issued yesterday, Hon said that the presidential speech and the steps so far taken by the federal and the various state governments to arrest the situation “are very far from being satisfactory”.
He said: “I have read President Buhari’s national address on COVID- 19 and have observed other steps taken so far; but as I stated above, they are just a drop in the ocean.
“Aso Rock must immediately rise to the occasion, borrowing from other countries and even crafting our indigenous means of tackling the scourge.”
He urged the president to consider taking the following measures:
“Mr. President can act through the Central Bank of Nigeria, as other countries are doing, to provide some immediate interventionist measures. Former CBN Governor, Muhammadu Sanusi, unilaterally, relying on extant legal frameworks, released the sum of N150 billion in 2013 to manufacturers, at the rate of seven per cent interest, to shore up the manufacturing sector. This can be replicated now, to enable manufacturing, at cheaper rates, of hand sanitisers, facial masks, fumigation chemicals. The various petrochemical companies in the Niger Delta should be compelled to liaise with other manufacturing entities to achieve this. The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN), the various Chambers of Commerce, captains of industry, can be coopted into this arrangement.
“Secondly, the federal government should, still utilising such large financial war chest from the CBN, immediately give grants to all the States of the Federation and the FCT, Abuja, to enable them fight the plague to a standstill. This gesture should even be extended to all the 774 Local Government Councils of the country.