By Dike Onwuamaeze
The Nigerian Association of Chamber of Commerce, Industry, Mines and Agriculture (NACCIMA) has called for a review and gradual relaxation of the lockdown imposed by the federal government as well as some states, to contain the spread of COVID-19 pandemic in Nigeria.
A statement at the weekend by the Director General of NACCIMA, Mr. Ayo Olukanni, commended the various governments for their determined efforts to stop the spread of virus through the use of various strategies for almost one month now and noted that it has become necessary to review the lockdown order and replace it with a more strategic approach.
According to the association, the total lockdown was taking a toll on businesses across the country. It stated that the ripple effects on security was becoming alarming; especially as miscreants seize the opportunity to rob citizens and break into business premises.
“Consideration should be given to gradual opening of some businesses and other commercial operations.
“Steps should therefore be taken to allow some categories of workers to resume work and business operations while keeping to safety protocols such as wearing of face masks, social distancing ban on large gathering etc and increase use of testing to identify those who may have been affected and requiring isolation and treatment.
“Certainly, a lockdown order ad-infinitum is not sustainable and many of our members are of the view that this should be reviewed to ease the lockdown without. This is of course without prejudice to the safety issues which is the duty of all,” he added.
Olukanni noted that members of the NACCIMA across the country have made donations in kind and cash across the country to relevant groups and institutions in support of the governments’ efforts to mitigate the spread of the disease.
“Our members have also been playing our roles on the committee we are serving such as the Federal Ministry of Industry, Trade and Investments’ committee to ensure uninterrupted supply of essential products and services at this difficult period.
“This is a reflection of commitment of NACCIMA and its members to play its role in the fight against the deadly virus and its various negative economic and social impacts,” he said.