With increasing cases of COVID-19 in the country, a Pan Akwa Ibom Socio-political platform, Ibom Patriots has called on the federal government to establish test centres in each state of the Federation and Abuja.
This, the group said has become necessary as it noted that the dependence of States on Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) for test results on the status of suspected patient does not only slow appropriate action but endangers lives.
This was part of the group’s suggestions contained in a press release on the management of the novel COVID-19 and made available to newsmen in Uyo, recently.
According to the press release signed by the Chancellor of Ibom Patriots, Obong Bassey Inuaeyen and other principals of the group, there was an urgent need for the government to decentralize their operations as it concerns the novel COVID-19.
“It is our considered view that the apparent centralized operations by PTF and in particular, some functions of the Nigeria Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) should be unbundled”.
“Decentralization will lead to quicker testing and quicker results. It will also ease possible conflicts between NCDC and States in the announcement of confirmed results for positive persons”.
As contained in the press release, the group equally raised concerns about the treatment of COVID-19 patients.
“Ibom Patriots strongly opined that the treatment of patients should not be shrouded under a cloudy atmosphere. NCDC should lay bare the process vis-à-vis the drugs used for treatment”, it said.
The group also kicked against harassment of essential workers by security operatives even as it called for more public enlightenment, improvement of medical facilities as well as encouragement of drug research and development in the country.
While acknowledging that the lock down and restriction of movement exercise by the federal government has helped in curbing the spread of COVID-19, the group also said it has to be reviewed and ease out totally or in phases.
The group noted that the lock down has not only affected public and private enterprises, it has ruined the economic lives of persons who survive on daily income.
“The challenge of survival with prolonged or continuous lockdown and restriction of movement is becoming suicidal and government should not engage on it any longer.
“Instead, government should deepen basic health protocols that will standardise safety”, it said.