Posted by News Express | 6 April 2020 | 589 times
Members of the Delta State Civil Society Community, an umbrella body for activists and non-governmental organisations in the state, have lauded residents in the state over their compliance to the sit-at-home directive by the Ifeanyi Okowa-led administration geared towards preventing an outbreak of Coronavirus also known as COVID-19 in the state.
This, was contained in a press statement made available to journalists after the inaugural online meeting of the group on Friday, 3rd April, 2020.
The press statement was signed by Mr. Sylvester Itimi, National Secretary, Civil Society Advance Forum on Sustainable Development (CAS2030); Deacon Okezi Odugala, Executive Director, Eziodu Initiative for Sustainable Environmental Development (EISED) and Coordinator, Forum of Delta State NGOs; Barr. Duncan Afahokor, Convener, Advocacy Watch; Atakurhievwe Edmund, State Coordinator, Niger Delta People Salvation Front (NDPSF) and 29 others.
“As actors on the frontlines in response to the current unprecedented threat to humanity by the devastating global pandemic known as Corona Virus (COVID-19), we find it imperative to partner with His Excellency, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa and the Delta State Government in advancing its concerted efforts and decisive actions in combating this catastrophic scourge on mankind.
“The Delta Civil Society Community working in tandem with the United Nations (UN) expectations of us as the conscientious live wire, bastions and custodians of society, is collaborating with the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the Delta State Governor on Civic Engagement and Civil Society being held by Activist Rex Anighoro to initiate the ‘Civil Society ACTION on COVID -19’,” the coalition said.
They further commended the State Government of the for proactively putting in place the United Nations recommended measures to combat and decollate Corona virus, (COVID–19).
They noted that the administration of Governor Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa has implemented World Health Organization’s comprehensive measures of find, test, isolate and treat every case, and trace every contact to the full.
They commended Delta State Government’s aggressive public awareness campaign, early establishment and equipping of isolation centres, training of dedicated health workers across the state on COVID-19 preparedness and case management, fumigation of public places, timely closure of state borders as well as the sit-at-home order regardless of its shattering social-economic consequence on the state, adding that “it is impressive that all these were achieved despite no case been recorded in the state.”
Furthermore, they called for increased civil society and private sector participation and partnership with the Delta State Government in containing and preventing the COVID -19 pandemic in the state, as they admonished Deltans and non-Deltans to continue to be law abiding and comply with safety protocols as presented to the public by the Delta State Ministry of Health, the Federal Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO).
Meanwhile, they urged government officials, security agencies and others involved in enforcing the lockdown directive to respect the rights of residents in the state and also condemned the extra-judicial killings, extortions, intimidations, molestations, and gender abuse on citizens and as well frowned at the alleged corrupt practices of security agents at the state borders accused of collecting bribes to flout the border closure orders of the state government.
“A committee of the Delta State Civil Society Community has been mandated to investigate alleged human rights abuses and extra-judicial killings of Deltans in the State. The Delta State Civil Society Community will not tolerate human right abuses and extra-judicial killings of Deltans,” the statement also read.
Other resolutions reached by the group include setting up in each senatorial district ‘Action’ teams to monitor the COVID-19 stay at home enforcements alongside security agencies and government officials to ensure protection of the human rights of citizens.
According to them, the ‘Action’ teams will also monitor the prices of commodities and alleged exploitations of traders in the make shift markets by government officials who are said to be demanding so much money from the traders before they can trade.
While requesting that the Delta State Government provide welfare palliatives to Deltans and create food banks across the state to support the less privileged and vulnerable in the state to cushion the effect of the lockdown, they tasked the government, security agencies and community vigilantes to intensify efforts in combating crime as people stay at home.
They noted that many cases of home robberies and sexual assaults are reported daily on social media.
The group also called for the decongestion of prisons and close monitoring of persons living in congested areas.
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