5th April, 2020
Veteran comedian, Francis Agoda also known as I Go Dye has written an open letter to President Muhammadu Buhari on what to do to tackle the Coronavirus pandemic ravaging the world.
I Go Dye who had started a campaign against the pandemic after suspending the celebration of his 25th anniversary on stage due to the pandemic wrote the letter under his capacity as the World Habitat Ambassador.
He prescribed several ways the President can combat the spread of the dreaded virus.
The letter titled “Our Negligence Is A Devastating Time Bomb” was dated April 5, 2020. In the letter, he claimed he had raised some of the issues in a previous letter sent to the President and governors as far back as October 14, 2013 with the title “Logic and Reason Without Guns.”
He said: “First of all, let me start by reminding you that great men and countries learn from history, hence they avoid the calamities and errors made by fallen heroes, whose failures destroyed, even in the midst of perfection.
“What human or medical equipment do we have in Nigeria that can be compared with America, Spain, Italy or even the whole of Europe, which have been ravaged by the Coronavirus? Are we prepared at this time? Whereby looking from outside we still have not made essential preparations by learning from what these nations are currently facing.
“A few weeks ago, it was only one case, but today we have gone from 1 to 210 infected persons, who may have had contact with 5 people before detection, which could total to 1150 and above in two weeks time if we are not careful in managing the spread of the virus.
“Yesterday, the world thought it was a Chinese problem, forgetting that the world now is a global village.
“Today total cases of coronavirus globally is now 1,140,327 and deaths globally 61,684 as of 4 April 2020.
“Please Mr President, you should kindly release emergency funds to all state governor’s across the country and you should please direct all governors and the minister of health to work out a process to use some of the closed schools as isolation centres, while the all Stadia should be prepared for any eventualities.
I also appeal to the government to find a way to send funds to aid the quest of survival because 98% of Nigerians earn their livelihood from the street; meaning the ‘sit at home’ order, is likely to be suicidal!
Why? There is no light, no running water, no job and there is no alternative provided for food, money and other basic needs of the masses in Nigeria, who are more than 95 % of our population.
“Sir, please provide comprehensive details of how to assist Nigerians with some sort of financial assistance as they stay at home because some of the money you announced is to make one man billionaire again because the money will not get to those who truly need it more.
“Let’s look inward and provide solutions to save the many innocent lives that might be lost in the outbreak of a catastrophic epidemic.
“The concerns for the masks at this time should be held important. We should start getting volunteers of fashion designers and tailors to make masks in their homes, by sewing them, while government provide the materials and logistics needed in case the outbreak escalates.
“There should be an emergency training process to expand our medical teams. No one is coming to our aid, if we fall into crisis, because the whole world has it’s own fair share of trouble. With only five laboratory screening centers reported in the media, across 36 state s, this is not encouraging at all. An emergency training process to expand our medical teams, should be in process by now across the states .
“The bulk of the blame will be on you, if we fail to address this issue now, as it will be assumed we had all the time to prepare but we did nothing.
We are privileged that the virus did not start from Africa and the effects in China Italy, Spain and America should have given us a first hand experience on the possible outcome. This is not a time to play politics, but every one of us should join hands to stop the spread.
“The financial donations made by individuals and cooperate organizations should be used to expand our medical facilities and build more isolation centres. We also need to create emergency units in our local communities. The time to act is now.
“As we go on with the fight against the Coronavirus, we should try to support our farmers to also continue with their farming and also do everything possible to stop Fulani herdsmen, otherwise we might be out of food within a short time.
“We shall go through this period if we do the needful now before it’s too late,” he concluded.