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Total Lockdown? Give this a second Thought Sir!

Your excellency sir May the peace of Allah be upon you,

Forgive me for I do not know how to pay a long encomiums. All I can say is, may Allah help you to discharge this enormous and onerous task you have accepted to carry out.

Initially, I use to believe in total lockdown, but as events unfold, I realized that due to our peculiarities it is completely unfit in this our society.

To me Sir, what has worked in the developed nations would be hard to work here. This is because they can lockdown for as long as one year or more, they have the resources to support that. Our case here is so peculiar that it needs a careful and evidence base planning. Total lockdown, to me is like trying to fit a round peg in a square hole.

Sir, one best way to go about this is to get a team of experts to synthesize existing evidence, analyse models of other countries and develop a synopsis for your executive consumption. This could be done within 48 hours if you have the right team.

Moreso, there is still no known time as to when the virus is going to be eradicated. For this reason alone, the idea of a lockdown should be shunned. I assure you Sir, it is not sustainable! No matter how long we locked-down, we can't lock for more than 3 months.

I have penned some suggestions below as my contribution for your administration's exertions towards fighting the COVID-19 pandemic;

1- Try as much as possible to decongest detention centres. This would be an opportunity for the authorities to correct many injustices.

2- close all motor parks, especially those ones that are meant for travels to outside the state capital.

3- Close all markets and leave roadside shops. This is because its easier to manage crowds in small shops than in markets. All shops must strictly observe social distancing and hygiene guidelines.

4- people everywhere must observe social distancing, especially in ATMs.

5- All ATM machines that are within a confined building should be closed.

6- If possible, banks/or the state government should provide a staff at all ATMs that will; sanitize the machine, make sure physical distancing rules are observed and also ensure each ATM user sanitized his hands before and after using the machine.

7- Make mandatory the use of facemasks in public places. This will be an opportunity for the government to create more jobs by mobilising and training people who can sew the masks using 'Ofi' and could be sold at an affordable price. There's evidence that masks drastically reduce transmission.

8- Stop all religious places (mosques and churches) from gatherings and congregational prayers.

9- stop the gatherings of people, be it weddings, naming or majalisa.

10- But allow people to go to farms if they wish.

11- All offices, shops, factories (e.g bakery, water, meat etc) must maintain hygiene such as use of hand sanitizers before entry, frequently wash hands and maintain physical distancing rules.

12- Stop all public transportation. This will reduce movement of people and also ensure public transport infections are reduced.

13- Close all barber and women hair salons. There's evidence that these two places are high risk places.

That's all for now, thank you.

Comr. Adedayo Said-Balogun is a public affair analyst, you can contact him directly on

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