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Nigerians Better Be Cautious, This Deadly Virus Means Business - By Tai Emeka Obasi

OPINIONS - Posted on: 20th Mar. 2020 at 10:30AM

They call it Coronavirus, codenamed it COVID-19...while President Donald Trump calls it China Virus.

Whichever name you choose, it is for real. It is deadly. It kills menacingly. And more, its effect on economic and social activities is unprecedented.

I know how technologically advanced China is. If alpha means five world bests they comfortably belong there. When the news of the virus broke, I believed China would sort it out in a matter of days. But how wrong I was!

Fifty days and counting, the men of Kung-fu and Karate are still battling, counting deaths and spraying cities with all manners of chemicals.

I will keep the myriad of conspiracy theories for another write-up.

My worries on this devastating microorganism are legion.

How did it give and still giving China endless headaches?

How did it manage to get all football leagues and sporting activities off the Calendar?

How could it penetrate Rome and Italy to such calamitous effect?

How could it permeate America despite the men of stars and stripes keeping a very close watch while in readiness to engage?

Now, take a look at Iran. If you think that Middle East country is only about terrorism better think again. Iran is very far more technologically advanced than any country in Africa. Yet they are dying like mere pigeons from this enemy of the new world.

I spend enormous time studying the devastation this virus is causing all over the world. And believe me, I am truly scared for God's world!

I have a lot of friends in America and Europe and we spend hours talking on phone. Whatever I couldn't read up they provide with eyewitness tales. And I imagine, feel their pulses and get even more scared.

The tales from Italy, the Pope's home, is even more devastating!

The American government is spending $1 trillion dollars to compensate for idle hours occasioned by the self-quarantine order. Their population is not up to twice Nigeria's population.

Then wait for it!

Nigerian government just finished arrangement to borrow $22.8 billion for economic and social development before the world instability occasioned by this utterly destructive virus forced them into 'suspension'. What they are looking for is not up to a quarter of the fraction of what America is spending to effectively combat this menace.

Now, as a Nigerian, how much do you think your government, in the face of lowest possible price of crude oil in the international market, afford to combat this menace? Your guess is as good as mine.

Our fate is in our hands. Our government will not offer much because they are broke!

Therefore take precautions. As I write, Nigeria is recorded on the international log with 12 cases. Chances are that it may not be accurate and if that is the case, the bet is on that there are more.

There are simple self-defense mechanisms against this virus.

Luckily, we have a lovely weather in these perilous times, which scientists confirmed is adverse to the survival of this virus.

Make less use of air-conditioners in your homes and cars. Any temperature less than 27 degrees Celsius is calling for trouble in this crazy season.

Avoid hotels that 'chill' their receptions below this temperature. There could be free droplets of the virus loitering around.

I wish all our airports could monitor their air cooling system to make sure they never go below this temperature. Let people sweat and live than the other way round.

If you have children, stop them from going to schools even if the government doesn't. If it means missing a session, better that than bringing this unwanted visitor home to you.

Avoid gatherings. I may not attend burials henceforth till further notice. Avoid public transports as much as possible.

It will be suicidal for governments to close down markets. Hunger will kill faster than the virus if that is done in Nigeria but as a family, make sure you go to market when the weather is appreciably hot, then bath with soap immediately you get home before coming into any contact with your household.

Even your best friend, don't shake or hug him/her till further notice.

Chukwuemeka Odumegwu Ojukwu University is holding their 10th Convocation ceremony tomorrow. If they're reading me, they should please cancel that and avoid such mammoth gathering. That ceremony can wait for now.

If you can afford it, please work from home. Minimise going out as much as possible. Avoid crowdy bars if you must go to one.

Then ultimately pray. Pray to God in any dialect comfortable to you. Let the point be definite - GOD DELIVER US FROM THIS DEADLY VIRUS.

I believe we shall overcome.

~ Written by Tai Emeka Obasi

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