The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP), has implored Governor Nyesom Wike of Rivers State to stop using the COVID-19 pandemic to trample on the rights of Nigerians.
SERAP gave the warning on Friday, May 8; after reports emerged that the state government said it would auction vehicles impounded for flouting the lockdown imposed on Port Harcourt and Obio/Akpor local government areas of the state.
1stNews had reported that Wike had monitored the lockdown and caught many who violated the order. He vowed to punish offenders, noting that trailers and the cows seized would be auctioned tomorrow.
However, SERAP pilloried the Governor saying that the implementation of the lockdown by state authorities must be guided by the principles of legality, necessity, proportionality, and precaution.
“Following reports that Rivers State threatened to auction vehicles impounded during COVID-19 lockdown; we are asking Rivers state Governor, Nyesom Wike to stop using COVID-19 as an excuse to violate people’s rights.
“The implementation of the lockdown by Rivers state authorities must be guided by the principles of legality, necessity, proportionality, and precaution.
“Violating lockdown restrictions cannot justify taking people’s property unlawfully or resorting to impunity. We will hold governor Wike accountable if the abuses are not immediately stopped”, the group said.
Meanwhile, the Commissioner for Health in Lagos State, Prof. Akin Abayomi; says the state may record between 90,000 and 120,000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 by July.
In addition, he revealed that Lagos faces the challenge of confirmed cases of COVID-19 fleeing their homes; before the ambulance gets there to pick them.
He advised people to desist from such practices; adding that the earlier they commenced treatment, the higher their chances of survival.
Abayomi made this known during a media briefing on COVID-19 update on Friday in Lagos. The Commissioner said it was estimated that the state would reach its peak period by July or August. Further, he revealed that the state recorded its highest number of infections on May 7, with 183 new cases confirmed.
He disclosed that Alimosho, Oshodi and Isolo Local Government Areas were beginning to record increased cases of COVID-19. According to him, 97 per cent of patients at the state’s isolation centres are mild and moderate cases; with only three per cent being severe cases.
Additionally, Abayomi said mortality rate from the infection was more among males; adding that those with underlying conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, cancer, were at higher risk. The commissioner noted that the state had upscaled its testing capacity to reach more people toward flattening the curve.