COVID-19: APC Knocks Obiano, Urges Him To Set Up Test Centres

Raymond Ozoji, Awka

The All Progressives Congress (APC) has advised Governor Willie Obiano to expedite action and set up Covid-19 test centres across Anambra state to enable citizens to access the facilities to ascertain their status.

APC held that it was not fair enough to spend huge sums of money to establish isolation centres whereas there was no single testing facility in the state where the people could ascertain their covid19 status so that the quarantine centres could be useful in the event of outbreaks.

The party’s standpoints were contained in a statement signed by the state publicity secretary, Mr. Okelo Madukaife, and made available to our correspondent.

APC noted, “Our great party welcomes Governor Obiano’s April 18, 2020 broadcast and are happy that the update on Anambra State COVID-19 case finally came.

“We are grateful to God that one confirmed case of our state is turning out to be the fastest recovery in the whole of Nigeria, if not the world. If this becomes the another first from the home state of the great Zik of Africa, we proudly claim it.

“We note however that a total of 20 tests for a state of roughly 10 million population staying indoors for one confirmed case is still a faint ratio that looks bleak to hit the required targets of keeping this dangerous ailment away.

“At the risk of sounding repetitive, we hold the considered view that Anambra needs more tests, has the capacity to set up a test centre, or centres within the state and at its boundaries, and the fact that government is not thinking in that direction makes us hold the considered view that current approaches are timid and can be better handled. There needs to be adequate cooperation with all who can offer help on this subject.

“Gladly, Lagos State has announced the establishment of 26 centres in the state. Anambra may not need 26 as yet, but we need test centres and need them fast.

“Although the governor stopped short of indicating the date he signed the reference Anambra COVID-19 Bill into law, we are aware that Anambra State House of Assembly deliberated and passed the bill on April 17, 2020.

“We are equally aware that the violence at Nkpor, Idemili North Local Government Area which reportedly claimed two youthful lives and recorded arson took place on April 15, 2020, just like the shooting and maiming in Umunze, Orumba-South local government area of the state. We roundly reject the exchange of life for underwriting of burial costs, which are two parallels.

“It is needless to remind us that the Nebuchadnezzar Code, styled Anambra Burial law, adds salt to injury, when actual costs come to play. But our understanding of the remedy for the unlawful killings is to dig up the immediate and remote factors of that shameful and morbid event which led to arson and other chains of events, subject culprits to the wrath of the law and mete out punishments where necessary.

“Anambra life cannot continue to be cheap in the eyes of APGA governance, considering that we had spoken out when the governor fixed a monetary penalty for herdsmen killing Anambra citizens in the past. A similar development in Osun State has met the right course of action with the concerned policeman already undergoing trial,” it added.

According to the statement, APC prevailed on the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) to take proper administrative and judicial notice of the foundation of injustice being allegedly erected by Governor Obiano on this count and redirect this grave issue of fundamental human rights.

The party therefore challenged  human right non-governmental organisations in Anambra State to prove that they were not mere appendages to the incumbent administration.

It said, “Once again, we implore government to dismantle all illegal roadblocks mounted in the state by all mushroom bodies alien to the law, who are keying in to a new window of corruption to nip any future clash in the board.

“We challenge the Obiano-led state government to take a far-sighted view of this matter and outline what ought to happen when lockdowns are over and the fear of COVID-19 is not over in the state. This means a decisive position of production of facemasks as well as known and yet unknown preventive measures,” the statement concluded.

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