By Chief Goodman Farooq Akwu
Since COVID-19 debuts in Nigeria like any other country, the world over with devastating human and material resource casualties, the drama in Kogi has been a sad one. Governor Yahaya Bello’s perspective of the dreaded disease – COVID-19, otherwise known as coronavirus all these while has been a huge joke of a governor who does not understand the art and science of governance. Funny enough, he treats the issue with kid gloves and conduct himself like a playboy by the river bank.
In the matter of coronavirus episode in Kogi State, Bello is not only an irritant, but a law breaker and was always raising the bar of disobedience. Certainly, Bello is not above law. There is no State which borders Kogi State that is free of the dreaded disease and for the governor to claim that State is free of coronavirus is the biggest joke of the century. How did the governor arrive at a virus free status of Kogi State seeing that citizens have not been tested as required by the guidelines of the World Health Organisation.
It beat one’s imagination how the governor tend to politicise everything in an unreasonable manner. The National Centre for Disease Control (NCDC) is an organ of government mandated to test, manage and control diseases. How their activities are conducted in the interest of humanity in Kogi State that arose suspicion of ulterior motives by the governor and his foot soldiers remains in the realm of their inferiority complex. It is only in Kogi State that officials of NCDC who are experts in their field walked into Yahaya Bello’s landmine so to speak. The officials who are coming to carry out their statutory functions?
Firstly, it began with convincing the governor that they were coming to the State and the governor who should be happy for a rare collaboration was sad only to lay ambush by demanding that the august visitors should go on 14 days isolation. What a sarcasm?NCDC officials have being to Lagos, Kano, Ogun, Oyo, Jigawa, Yobe and all over the country without any Governor querying their presence or authority as the covid-19 highest regulatory organ set up by the President and Commander in Chief Muhammadu Buhari.
Even, if Yahaya Bello’s claim of a virus free Kogi State is anything to go by, irrespective of spurious allegations he spewed against the agency in previous weeks, why the scare of the NCDC officials who would have tested the citizens to confirm Bello’s insistence to his credit?
Why was the governor of Kogi Stare embarrasing the emissary of the President? NCDC officials are working hard and round the clock to curtail the COVID-19 pandemic, why didn’t Bello wait to leverage on their professionalism, but chose to humiliate them alongside his oafs and leeches?Why should arrant nonsense be taken too far? Who is Governor Yahaya Bello before the President? Buhari’s unbowed commitment in tackling pandemic was earning him accolades across the world, but Bello’s Kogi State seems to be a clog in President Buhari’s effort.
Obviously, Kogi is ill-prepared in tackling the pandemic, and the presence of NCDC officials would be to mitigate the lapses of ill-preparesness, rather than seeing their activities at cross purposes. What happened on 7th Thursday April 2020 is a calculated attempt to drag Kogi’s good into the bad book of Mr President. The President in his wisdom set up the Presidential Task Force headed by the Secretary to govt’ ( SGF) to oversee the entire country without restriction, but because Bello failed his official responsibilities to put things in their proper shape, instead of cooperating with NCDC to help him fix a centre and supply Kogi with testing Kits, he rather tried to intimidate them while his appointees praised him.
One is not feeling at ease on the happenings in Kogi State with regards to Yahaya Bello vs NCDC.
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