I will like to give Kudos to our amiable & hardworking Governor, Prince (Dr.) Dapo Abiodun and Ogun COVID-19 team led by Dr Tomi Coker for their indefatigable love and passion towards making Ogun State a Coronavirus Free State.
However, it is expedient that i call our attention to some ugly developments since the commencement of total lockdown in Abuja, Lagos and Ogun States few weeks ago.
You will recall that Dangote Cement Factory was one of the companies given exemption letter to operate. Despite the rationale behind this exemption, I have seen lots of Social Media articles, even from a renowned Legal Practitioner written against our Governor. As political beings, our views and perceptions differ even though the State Government is only being concerned about our welfare. It is imperative that we set aside political differences whenever we want to address issues that concern the peace & wellbeing of Ogun citizens. It is by so doing that we can achieve our common objectives.
We can now all see that this one week extension has given a kind of relieve so that our economy will not totally crash just as the oversight of Governor Seyi Makinde of Oyo State.
At this Juncture, whilst the State Government has given Exemption Letters to organisations and at this instance to Dangote Cement, there is also a need for them to address the safety of our people in Yewa North where its plant is operating vis-a-vis the entire Ogun State. It is inimical to play politics at the detriment of innocent citizens of Ogun State and Nigeria at large.
I received severals calls from my constituents across Yewa North on the danger that is looming at Dangote cement plant at Ibese/Igbogila. The ways and manners of operations is at variance with COVID-19 Safety Measures & Guidelines. There is no medical taskforce to enforce discipline at all and all these truck drivers travel to the 36 states of the Federation and as far as Ghana and others neigbouring African Countries. It will not be out of order if those drivers are tested or put on isolation upon their return from such trips. Not only that, all casual workers from my town in Igbogila and its environ commune daily to work and interact with members of the community despite their exposure to risk.
I was at the Dangote cement plant myself on a fact finding mission. The ways and manners by which businesses were ongoing in their parks and premises left much untold. One will never believe that COVID-19 is existing in Nigeria at all. The company has largely violated Social distance Measures and all preventive measures laid down by the Federal & State Governments. The gathering alone is quite over 100 in a cluster. It is this kind of flagrant negligence that resulted in the great death toll in Kano today.
Dangote Cement plant in Ibese/Igbogila needs to look into these issues and put measures in place for the safety of citizens of Ogun State and Nigeria at large. It is high time Ogun State government directed NCDC, Ogun Taskforce and Security agencies to look into the affairs at Dangote Cement Factory.
In view of the foregoing, i hereby recommend as follow:
Dangote Cement should provide Temporal Accomodation for all casual workers coming from neigbouring communities into their Plant. This will at least limit their chances of interaction with other Community Members and lower the risk of Transmitting the Virus should in case the Casual Workers contract it.
All the truck drivers should be regularly observed and perhaps placed on Isolation after each trip. This will minimise the chances of infecting others should in case they become carriers.
The State Government should hurriedly place a ban, disinfectant and discongest the Trailers park.
Ogun State Government should deploy able security officers to enforce social distancing measures and checkmate the influx of people, such as Area Boys etc who ordinarily have no business around the Company but still continue to go there.
Conclusively, permit me to appreciate His Exellency for the random testing Centres for Coronavirus across our communities and the recent world standard Isolation Centres in Ogun State. I will also enjoin His Exellency to improve on the incentives given to our health workers. I believe we cannot compare ourselves to Lagos financially as I have already stated in my open letter, i further enjoin our health workers to cooperate with our amiable Governor in return. I am glad to tell our frontline health workers that the issue of Life Insurance has been taken care of.
I wish to register my profound appreciation to our hardworking Commissioner for Health, Dr Tomi Coker who left her comfort zone to serve her fatherland all because of her passion for the wellbeing of her people. The good Lord will uphold you and I pray that you will not have any regret. My colleagues and I in the 9th Assembly will give you all necessary supports while we also believe that the executive arm of government and officials of the Health Ministry will not be an obstacle to your good visions for State.
Long live Ogun State.
SIGNED: HON.(CHIEF) ADEYANJU ADEGOKE AWOSO REPRESENTING EGBADO NORTH 1. CHAIRMAN HOUSE COMMITTEE ON HEALTH OGHA.