There is no gainsaying the fact that the second wave of COVID-19 pandemic all over the world is killing faster and easily transmittable compared to the first wave. This statement is not to cause unnecessary panic in the mind of people in the country but the need for all and sundry to continue to take necessary precautions by observing the laid down guidelines to curtail the virus.
It would be recalled that the first wave statistics by the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) as of December 17th 2020 had total confirmed cases of 76,206; 67,110 discharged and 1201 deaths, but the number of cases and dead persons wasn’t as rapid as the second wave.
Lagos State in particular has recorded a spike in the number of people testing positive to the virus and this brings the number of cases in Lagos alone to more than 32,000. So the need for people to be more cautious in the way they live, interact and socialise with colleagues, families and friends. Anyone would agree with me that this second wave comes with severe symptoms and if care is not taken, there is tendency to have high number of cases and deaths this period.
It’s disheartening that the resurgence of COVID-19 has claimed lives within the shortest period including the younger brother of the Lagos State Deputy Governor, Obafemi Hamzat; immediate past Registrar of Joint Universities Preliminary Examinations Board (JUBEB), Duro Ajeyalemi, whose death came less than 72 hours after a former Vice Chancellor of University of Lagos, Prof. Oyewusi Ibidapo Obe died due to the COVID-19 complications. There were several other deaths of unknown persons.
The global pandemic is really ravaging our societies this time but before it goes beyond control, our government needs to apply strict sanctions to defaulters of COVID-19 protocols, such as regular handwashing, use of face masks, hand sanitizer, avoiding crowded areas and maintaining social distancing in order to curtail the spread of the virus in the states and country at large. Government at all levels should also try as much as possible to set up more collection centres.
Meanwhile, the rate at which the virus is afflicting people, the government might resolve to declaring another lockdown which many Nigerians might not find too comfortable as many are still trying to get over the first experience. The first lockdown had adverse effects on many citizens especially the less privileged, vulnerable, the artisans and unemployed youths.
Countries like United States of America, Uganda, UK, South Africa, amongst others, distributed foods and beverages from house to house to their citizens, but the reverse is the case in Nigeria. The palliatives distributed to the aged and vulnerable did not go round the targeted persons.
However, if going for the vaccines is the best way to curb the spread of the virus in the country and the world, there is need for government to be careful and examine the vaccines before administering it on citizens so as not to cause unnecessary havoc while health practitioners should also be well equipped with personal protective materials for prevention.
Taylor Temitayo, Oke-mosan, Abeokuta