The Youth Party (YP) has taken a dim view of federal government’s decision to shut commercial and social activities down in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) Abuja, Lagos and Ogun States.
It lamented that the move would be counter-productive.
The party, in a statement by its spokesperson, Ms. Ilamosi Ekenimoh, noted that though the outbreak of the pandemic threatened Nigeria’s socio-economic existence and deserved all the efforts and attention, to completely shut down the commercial nerve centre of the nation, without any immediate palliatives, would prove to be wrong step.
The YP noted that declaring such stringent action plan for the economic nerve centres of the nation without immediate palliatives would only make matters worse, suggesting such step had the tendency of increasing crime rates in the affected states and Abuja.
“65% of Nigeria’s economy is informal, especially in Lagos and these individuals survive on earning a daily income. It is, therefore, a bit insensitive for the government to shut out at least 5 million people in Lagos without anything to fall back on with those 14 days. How will they fend for themselves and their families?
“When millions of people have nothing to feed on for a whole week, some of them might be forced into crime and this could lead to social unrest,” the statement said.
It admitted to the severity of the pandemic and expressed support for the various measures taken by the government to contain the virus, but urged the government not to leave out millions of Nigerians to their fate.
“We understand that urgent and uncomfortable decisions have to be made to contain this pandemic but if the government will like to see commitment and compliance from all citizens, then it must be willing to immediately set measures in place to deliver palliatives to the most vulnerable Nigerians before the shutdown.
“This could mean cash transfers, food and groceries and anything that would not place a burden on these vulnerable Nigerians for the duration of the order,” it concluded.