BY:’ VITALIS UGOH, Calabar
The Online Media Practitioners Association of Nigeria, (OMPAN), Cross River State chapter, has called on Cross River State Government to intensify the fight against COVID-19 lockdown in the state.
The call was contained n a communiqué issued at the end of its monthly meeting held in Calabar.
The communique signed by its state Chairman, Comrade Efiok Ita Nyok stated that the call became imperative following the complete non-compliance with basic safety rules like wearing of face masks, use of hand sanitizers and physical distance by majority of the population in the state.
“Ninety percent of residents in the state no longer use personal protective equipment and go about their businesses with an air of nonchalance which speaks volumes of what might befall the state in the event of an outbreak of the pandemic in the state”.
OMPAN observed that the stage sits on a time bomb as the borders and points of entry into the state which used to be closely monitored have now become open for free entry and exit into the state.
” Reports from across the state shows that movement into and out of the state no longer witness scrutiny or restriction as was the case when the government announced the lockout against the pandemic”
The association said figures globally indicate that the rate of infection is on the increase and even in Nigeria there is a spike in the level of infection and the state having not witnessed any case should be sustained through continued and stringent lockout effort.
“Initiating a policy without close and continued monitoring is like kicking a ball down the road and letting it roll without being guided to a logical direction and that is not going to stop the infection from entering the state and causing havoc”. OMPAN noted.
The association also called on the state government to call on the contracting firm handling the construction of the Tinapa- Odukpani junction Roundabout road to expedite action to put pay to the frequent motor accidents that are being recorded along that road.
” There have been records of frequent motor accidents particularly trucks crashing on that road and obstructing free movement and causing avoidable hardship on road users,”
It stated that though rainfall is on the increase but measures should be taken by the contractor to avoid frequent crashes on the road..
The association also called on Government to intensify her efforts in battling with insecurity in the state especially kidnapping and other related social vices that has created so much tension in recent times. Having witnessed the impact of the aggravated insecurity by traders in the state capital, the association called on Government to close all lose ends rather than punishing the traders as was proposed