A discussion topic for Group 2 during The Readers’ Hub Bus Trip and Tour held on Sunday, 20th December 2020 – Compiled By Saifullahi Abusufyan (Medical Laboratory student, UDU Sokoto)

2020 is the year of misfortune to a common man in Nigeria. We experienced so many challenges ranging from the ASUU strike, COVID-19 pandemic, and #ENDSARS protest. Novel COVID-19 has been mysterious causing so much distress to the economy and the field of medicine in the whole world.

Remember, The first case of Corona Virus was found in Wuhan (China) in December 2019. Its first case in Nigeria was found in February 2020.

The first wave of COVID-19 was like a game to a common man in Nigeria. The virus was described by the poor as a “disease of the rich”, some believed it was just the normal cold, while others believed it was just introduced to disturb the life of a common man. The drugs for its treatment, its vaccine, and the reason why it kills so many European as compared to Africans has been mysterious to the doctors and scientists in the whole world. Many Nigerians do not believe in the existence of the Virus, and as such; the government to impose guidelines for its prevention and control.

During the first wave, Schools and all learning centres were closed, markets shut down and public gatherings were banned. It wasn’t easy for a common man to find even what to eat because prices of commodities skyrocketed and the intended COVID-19 palliatives intended for the masses were allegedly misappropriated by politicians and the likes.

Health care wasn’t easily accessible to the poor, because there were no enough ambulances to convey patients to hospitals. Thus; many people suffered, some died at home because of simple illness.

Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) didn’t respond promptly to the calls made to them, and there was rapid mistrust of information as the number of infected people proliferated day after another. There were no enough testing and quarantine facilities. Sanitisers and medical facemasks which I would like to call the heart of COVID-19 prevention guidelines were not made affordable to a common man.

The second wave of COVID-1 9 can be prevented if we take into account the drawbacks of the prevention measures during the first wave. Government and enlightened individuals should ensure proper enlightenment to the public about the real existence of the virus and its dangers.

The government should ensure the palliatives have reached appropriate targeted individuals, testing and quarantine centers should be made readily available. Face masks, hand sanitisers should be made available and affordable.

Remember; prevention is always better than cure

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