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Okigbo III: Covid-19 Thoughts | Precaution

Okigbo III: Covid-19 Thoughts | Precaution 

-Patrick O Okigbo III

“Ọnye aṅụna nga ma oyibo analụ!”

This adage is from the colonial days. It is an admonishment not to be confident to have avoided incarceration until one is sure that the colonial overlords have been defeated or sent packing. For as long as the colonial master is around, no one is really safe from being jailed. This is apt thought for this moment. No one should treat these times with levity until the novel Coronavirus is defeated and chased out of town.

The estimates are still not precise but the numbers are scary. The modelers at Imperial College London are seen as having the most accurate predictions. They say that there will be about 300,000 deaths in Africa under the most likely scenario. Some scenarios shows millions deaths. Even if they are wrong, it shows the magnitude of the problems we are facing.

Basically, do not be lulled into complacency by Nigeria’s low numbers. From all normal calculations, those numbers will start galloping soon. The virus has had enough time to travel and it must have. Data on infected cases will need time to travel as well. We should brace ourselves for the bad news.

We can all contribute to flattening the curve by following the instructions of the government agencies. Social distancing appears to be the best response at this time. It is hard and will get worse for the poor. The government (and its partners) must act now and provide relief for those who need it the most. The heavy lifting should be done now or the government will be paralyzed when the dam finally breaks.

Taking precaution is not cowardice. Planning ahead is what the government owes all of us. Plan for the worst and hope for the best. This is not the time for sophistry based on blind faith or confidence based on nothing.

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