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Covid-19: Labour Urges FG to Empower NIMC, Says Nigeria Need Credible Data

The Labour-Civil Society Situation Room on Covid-19 has call on the Federal Government to empower National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) with a fresh mandate to capture all Nigerian with all the relevant demographic information within the next two years.

According to a statement jointly signed by the prraidnets of Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC), Comrade Ayuba Wabba and his Trade Union Congress (TUC) Comrade Quadri Olaleye, said the called became imperative due to challenges COVID-19 has brought and the need for a credible data to fight the pandemic.

“The Covid-19 challenge has further brought to the fore the need for credible data now more than ever before. We call for the empowering of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) with a fresh mandate to capture every Nigerian with all the relevant demographic information within the next two years.

“while we commend our security personnel for doing their best, we need to adopt a new strategy of community participation and ownership through decentralization, enforcement and public enlightenment to ward and unit levels using a committee comprising local government officers, traditional rulers, labour and civil society activists, local vigilante and volunteers”.

On the continued increase of confirmed cases of Covid 19 in the country, the group called for a community based, decentralized testing centres in all the senatorial districts of the country.

“We call for a community based and decentralized contact tracing, testing, isolation and treatment. This should be prioritized as a major public health policy response to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“Furthermore, we call for more testing facilities and kits across the country. As a matter of national health emergency, testing centers should be established in every senatorial district of the country complete with community mobilization and enforcement”.

While commending Government for the relaxation of the lockdown in some parts of the country, the Situation Room, however, observed that the relaxation of the lockdown in the Federal Capital Territory, Lagos and Ogun States brought about some challenges and concerns which can be quickly addressed and fixed.

They blamed the situation on the failure to phase the lockdown relaxation by sectors and the absence of sector specific guidelines on the lockdown relaxation led to overcrowding of people at public places such as banks and markets.

They also observed that public health guidelines with regards to social distancing and the use of face masks were observed largely in the breach owing to widespread failure in enforcement and individuals not taking responsibility.

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