SECURITY operatives in Anambra State have been tasked on putting the present plight of the masses ahead of other considerations while carrying out orders to enforce the lockdown and other COVID-19 measures in the state.
The Auxiliary Bishop of the Catholic Diocese of Awka, His Lordship Most Rev. Jonas Benson Okoye, said the call became necessary following the hardship, which the coronavirus pandemic was generating across the nation.
In an interview Wednesday in Awka, Bishop Okoye said that government directives and the manner of enforcement “must have a human face in order to prevent a possible mass demonstration, which might be triggered by hunger.”
While he commended the free movement granted essential workers, he noted that it was imperative for law enforcement operatives to know who is an essential worker to forestall the harassment, which people have experienced with the lockdown order.
He described as inhuman the denial of access for private cars and wondered how a woman in labour could be rushed to the hospital, or in the case of any emergency, buy fuel or other essential things.
The cleric, who had criticized the directive by the State government to relocate local markets in different communities, argued that most of the designated places mapped out as foodstuff markets were not easily accessible, especially by those living in sub-urban communities that required transportation.
Bishop Okoye praised the creativity of Nigerians who have engineered a method of regularly washing their hands with soap and running water even in the absence of tap water in their homes, and noted that the pandemic has helped to improve the level of personal hygiene of people.
The Bishop called on the wealthy in the state to embrace philanthropy and contribute to the welfare of the needy and less privileged as this was one way of easing the hardship and burden of survival, which people are going through daily.