Edo govt to reward, sanction residents, groups, businesses, others over COVID-19 compliance – Nigerian Observer
The Edo State Government has disclosed plans to adopt the carrot and stick approach to drive compliance with guidelines and non-pharmaceutical interventions to contain the second wave of the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in the state.
Permanent Secretary, Edo State Ministry of Health, Dr.Osamwonyi Irowa, disclosed this while addressing journalists at the weekend in Benin City, the state capital.
Irowa said the step became necessary following expert epidemiologic projections that if people continue with their present behaviours of laxity in compliance with preventive protocols, the third wave of COVID-19 could present sooner than expected and possibly overwhelm the state’s healthcare system by the large numbers of infected persons who will need hospital care within a short space of time.
The Permanent Secretary said the reward will be in the form of written commendations to show good compliance with COVID-19 preventive measures, while sanctions will include warning letters, arrest, arraignment and prosecution of offenders.
According to him, “Sanctions and incentives shall be used to drive better compliance with risk mitigation strategies. Enforcement monitoring team(s) and mobile courts activities shall continue across the state to drive compliance.”
He noted that all citizens and stakeholders in Edo State, including religious and traditional institutions, health and educational organisations, industry players, the public and private sector and Civil Society Organizations, among others need to work together in the collective fight to contain COVID-19, adding, “We did it before; we can do it again – better this time!”
Irowa further assured that the government will continue to strengthen its strategic response on COVID-19 especially with regards to surveillance activities at entry points of the state and across the 18 local councils, Risk Communication engagement activities with messages and enforcement measures in keeping with State guidelines and Executive Orders, Laws and processes.
“We will not relent in strengthening COVID-19 vaccination uptake across stakeholder groups in the State for Public Health and Safety. As a state, we will ensure thorough strategic engagements and existing State Laws, guideline and Executive orders to strongly urge and encourage all frontline workers in Edo State (Health Workers, Security Personnel, Teachers among others) to get vaccinated due to strategic roles and exposure in health, learning and security enforcement.”
“Individuals, groups and organizations must take responsibility to avoid closed spaces, crowded places and close contact,” Irowa charged.
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