In a bid to halt the spread of COVID-19 in Oyo State, the state government has opted for self-policing rather than allowing security agents to enforce compliance with the guidelines on the virus prevention.
The Chairman of the state COVID-19 Decontamination and Containment Committee, Prof. Olanike Adeyemo, who disclosed this during the training of the containment team in Ibadan on Tuesday, said members of the team would be positioned to work from their various local government councils and local council development authorities across the state in a bid to check the spread of the pandemic in the state.
He said: “This is the next step in the containment of COVID -19 in the state as the virus has spread beyond Ibadan. You can imagine if there is an incident in Ibarapa and there is another one in Iseyin, it will be very difficult for you to cover it all.
“What the government is trying to do is to decentralise the containment efforts. This is embedded in all local governments across the state.
“Every local government has an environmental officer. These are the people that are being trained because they are the staff of Oyo State that are ready to take up the task as front-liners on behalf of the state. We will do it across geographical zones.
“We knew what happened when we had an inter-state lockdown. This COVID -19 is another avenue for some people to extort the people and harass them, but we are not ready for that. People were moving and they just needed to give money to security agents at every checkpoint.
“What we are advocating is self-policing. We have a compliance form; when you see someone not doing the right thing, you can report him, especially organisations because you can hold them accountable. I just sent a video recording of what is going on in a commercial bank here in Ibadan to the governor. Something has to be done about keeping the COVID-19 protocols in banks.
“It is about being responsible and responsive. We all have to know that the more the infection rate, the more you are likely to have mortality or death rate. So, you can’t joke with the disease. I charge everyone that is responsible, whether you own a business or banks, to take responsibility for people under the sphere of their influence. You need to protect your customers.”
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