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Covid-19: What We Did Wrong In Addressing The Novel Coronavirus



What we did wrong in addressing the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak.


Nurse Opeyemi Kasim Covid-19: What We Did Wrong In Addressing The Novel Coronavirus - 1588967693753729 1 225x300 - Covid-19: What We Did Wrong In Addressing The Novel Coronavirus

No one, no Nation no matter how organized and prepared gets 100% ready for a global pandemic such as Covid-19 (Corona virus).

With the limited supplies of antiviral medications, and equipments especially the ventilators, non-pharmaceutical interventions are likely to dominate the public health response to any pandemic, at least in the near term. Hence the need for proactive and when necessary dynamic measures to be put in place as strategic plans.

 Lecture delivered by Mr Opeyemi Ajibola Kazeem, Covid-19 Escalation Team Member, Eastbourne District General Hospital, UK on Novel Coronavirus and measures in containing the spread of the deadly virus.

Distinguished platform participants,

It is the primary responsibility of any government to provide safety and security for her citizens and residents within their geographical territories and those on foreign soils, thus, the government has the power to make legislations to aid such responsibilities.


However, such Legislative decisions must be made with ethical considerations.

For a nation with functional public health system, there is a level of emergency preparedness that should be in place, policies and emergency fund to initiate the first line of actions to protect its soil in cases of pandemic. This policies and preparedness MUST be tested before the outbreak ever occurred to ascertain its Functionality and Reliability.

What did we do wrong in addressing the Covid-19 pandemic

  • Late closure of our borders: Several days after the UN and WHO confirmed the global pandemic, Nigeria like many other African countries left the borders open, recording many unrestricted flights coming into the country. Some nations we quick to place a ban on the HOT ZONES.
  • Italy, China, UK, Spain and USA were red on the global pandemic map. We acted too late and gave the disease enough time to Cross our borders.

Counter Measures Put In Place

For the sake of clarity, I will be addressing the counter measures at various level of government and citizenry that will help containment considering the peculiarities of Nigeria, its economy and the people.

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Good enough, the government acted early to place a ban on movements on some. States in the country, such as Lagos, Abuja etc which are obviously hot zones for the spread. This single act was very efficient in slowing down the community spread of this disease.

In addition, the prompt setting up of a facility in Lagos for the treatment of people infected with COVID-19 was vital.

There are 2 main principles that must be instituted when dealing with an outbreak such as Covid-19.

  1. Public Health Countermeasures
  2. Therapeutic/Treatment countermeasures

What Could Have Been Done Better?


The government is an entity with various sectors, hence the need for collaborative efforts from all disciplines and sectors


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Shutting down borders early and till deemed unnecessary or impossible to continue.

Some diseases will eventually spread worldwide, delaying it infection buys more time for the vulnerable population who are most likely to die before a cure or vaccination is possible
Security agencies are charged to enforce Lock down and ensure no abuse of power by security forces.

Palliate the economy of the people and businesses:

Lots of Nigerians live on daily means and thus require one form of economic activity on daily bases to meet up with their needs especially food and essential needs like water, light and essential medicines.


“Hunger makes a thief of any man”

A full belly will yield to instructions.

One would argue that how long do government need to palliate, well, most nations who developed their economy and their people didn’t need to palliate for too long, their people were equipped to beforehand. So also small businesses had grants from government to pay workers a minimum percentage of their income to get the basic needs.

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Information sector.
It is approximately 10 weeks since COVID was declared, the media platforms have been coming up with

  • Multiple stories
  • Incessant headlines
  • Conflicting information.

What could the media have done better?

Moving Facts:


Fake news Media is thriving and the media is as responsible as the government for its effect.

Social media, is full of hearsay, the more reason why the NCDC should be making daily press conferences to update people. That way they have a single and reliable source of information.

NCDC should be making daily press conferences to update people

Lots of people were admitted with Chloroquine overdose, Alcohol overdose, etc because the fake news media platforms successfully got to them.

People need to trust the source of information to belief it. However the fake news media platforms are doing more harms to that. Government should still engage the people via the media to enlighten them on the nature of the disease and the implications for all of us. Lots of people believe, the others are only doubting because of the impact of fake reports here and there.

Some media platforms were used to spread misinformation, stigma and fake news.

Non Politicization Of the Outbreak, Public Engagement and Involvement

Balance should be vital when reporting pandemic over the media, reporting fact with the genuine intention to reveal latest news and not to carry out a political motive should be Paramount especially because this can compromise public health.


To me the impact reports is absolutely huge, the media should be an avenue to communicate health and travel safety advice from the governing bodies.
The hysteria from fake news will do unimaginable harm to public safety

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Public Health Surveillance And Commitment To Transparency by Government

Every state seem to want a case of the Covid-19 virus, there are many with equipped facilities springing up here and there.

This should not be treated as an opportunity to disburse unnecessary fund by FG or to obtain unneeded grants or loans or fund by state government. Transparency is the foundation of Trust, without trust in government, the people will rebel, that’s why some don’t even believe there is a virus

Sound Guidelines based on best available evidence. We have a guideline, how operational is worrisome.


Fair Process by Government

A case of the lady from the UK who was said to have had the virus 46days ago, she is asymptomatic and had been in isolation ever since, that’s unimaginable!

Apart from the fact that she was never given her result as evidence, a patient doesn’t need to be in isolation for more than 2 weeks at most for someone who is not showing symptoms or
someone not needing Intensive Care.  News outlets aired this case. It is absolutely an infringement of Rights. It is laughable and selfish to do so. 2 weeks isolation for any asymptomatic patient, that’s it. So help us God.

Quarantine people who made contact with a positive case is 2weeks, while only those needing intensive care will be hospitalized.

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Important Phase

  • Application of Social Distancing Legal Power
  • Protection of individual and properties

Protection Of Heathcare Workers

  • By providing adequate and required PPE, eg mask like N95, M3 series and other FFPs, apron , gloves, the healthcare workers are protected from the infection, that way they don’t spread it to the community.
  • MASKS MADE of clothes are not effective PPE against COVID-19. Each healthcare worker must be FIT tested before mask usage to know the appropriate and effective PPE for them.
  • Training of all healthcare workers and public health officers
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States should enforce federal quarantine laws.

Local association and Task Forces on Covid-19

They should be constituted for foster enforcement of legislation by government and ensure no misuse of authorities.


They also serve to inform the police or other agencies of any vital information

Awareness is a responsibility of all of us, from FG to state and local agencies or authorities, groups like NYCN etc to ensure right sourced information is disseminated to the people

The Citizens and their responsibilities towards Covid-19 Outbreak

1. Be in the know of the common symptoms of COVID 19. Common ones are:

  • Fever
  • Dry cough
  • Tiredness
  • Aches and pains
  • Nasal congestion
  • Headache
  • Diarrhea and sore throat.


Only one out of 5 people get seriously ill with breathing problems.

Older people and those with underlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart and lung problems e.g Asthma, conditions like Diabetes or Cancer are at high risk of developing serious complications (WHO, 2020)

However, Anyone Can Catch Covid-19 and Become Seriously  ill and Die

  1. For people with minor symptoms, self isolation, usually no need to seek medical care. But in Nigeria, due to the present Malaria rate, seek medical care if you show symptoms FOLLOW NATIONAL GUIDELINES
  2. Obey the law and be responsible for yourself and other people. If you are young, not everyone is. If you are healthy, some other people have underlying medical problems, if you are not showing symptoms, YOU MIGHT STILL SPREAD it
  3. Practice hand hygiene, respiratory care and hygiene
    Avoid touching your face
    Keep atleast 1 metre distance, this is especially when you are around someone coughing or sneezing
  4. If you come in contact with COVID patients or carrier, you may be infected, isolate yourself for 14 days. Follow the national guidelines if you show symptoms
  5. Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands and home environment
  6. Avoid crowded places
  7. We can grocery shop safely or buy food stuff in market safely by keeping distance between us and others around. Don’t touch what you don’t want to buy.
    Wash yourself and all your purchased thoroughly.

While Covid-19 is already here and lots of measures might be too late, it is in the hope that our leaders understand that developing our economy, health sector and other sectors alike is Paramount for any nation to survive unforeseen contingencies like the Corona virus outbreak, this should be a reminder to all of us that, how well we build and equip our HOME and our people will sometimes be the only chance we have to survive.
There is no reason why Nigeria as a nation should not be producing Ventilators, PPE and many other things we keep importing.

For a sleeping giant with over 200million citizens, our resources are unlimited and adequate for us to be a world power only of we harness and utilize them.

The government can do better, most countries called developed countries don’t even have 40% of our natural resources, but effective use and growth mindedness is what makes them outstanding..
It is however important that we all know this fact

“Our leaders are products of all of us”

Let’s all work together to wake the sleeping giant in us as a nation. When the eagle perch too much on with the hen, it will forget how to fly.

Covid-19 will come and go, Let’s make a united effort to build the nation of our dream.

Meet Ajibola: Jibola Kassim Covid-19: What We Did Wrong In Addressing The Novel Coronavirus - 1588967731144023 0 1 292x300 - Covid-19: What We Did Wrong In Addressing The Novel Coronavirus

Opeyemi Ajibola Kazeem


Was born May 23, in the mid 80s, to the Kazeem family from Agbo ile olowu. Father is a civil servant with Ogun state ministry of agriculture while mother retired from teaching services to go into the Sawmill business, being born by a merchant herself , an entrepreneur and a business woman, Alhaja Adeneye of Abogunloko sawmill

Education Background:

Had his Nursery/Primary Education in The then Ogun state university nursery and primary staff school Ago iwoye. Secondary education began in 1996 in Molusi College Ijebu Igbo, after which he proceeded to International School, Ogun state university now Olabisi Onabanjo where he had his junior education, he concluded his senior education in Achievers Model College Ijebu Igbo with many distinctions in O level.

Inspired by the love of service to humanity and the affinity to care for the people in need, he choose a career in Nursing Science, He had his general nursing in the premiere School of nursing Eleyele Ibadan excelling with credits in final qualifying exams, he proceeded to the Premiere School of Post basic Psychiatric nursing, Neuro-Psychiatric hospital aro Abeokuta Ogun state to bag his registration as a Mental health nurse

For the love of knowledge, he attended Great Obafemi Awolowo University ile ice to obtain his Bachelor degree in Nursing with excellence..


He is a certified Substance Abuse Counsellor and a major in administration of Human Cognitive behaviour Therapy (CBT) by the UNODC (United Nation Office for drug and Crime).

Positions Held

As A Student

Head Prefect in Senior secondary school

Class Governor although Nursing school days


Student Representative council Chairman in school of nursing Eleyele Ibadan

Head of Studies for Muslim student society in school of nursing Eleyele

He led the student reform with Acting Governor of Oyo state, Governor Alao Akala where they achieved a great revamp in student welfarism in the state in 2006

He was Amir of school of Post basic psychiatric nursing Aro

Positions Held as a Citizen


Nigerian Mental health bill draft committee member in 2018, he was one of the 2 representatives of The Association of psychiatric nurses In Nigeria. The bill is in the National Assembly undergoing final ratification

Vice Chairman, Association of Psychiatric nurses in Nigeria {APNON}

General Secretary of APNON
Assistant General Secretary of APNON

Member of Ogun state mental health awareness volunteer group Aro

Several committee duties in Neuro-Psychiatric hospital aro Abeokuta


Secretary, Academic Committee for The Hospital Nursing department

Part time Teacher for Visiting students to Neuro-Psychiatric hospital Aro

Volunteer for Multiple societal enriching programs like the annual WORLD MENTAL HEALTH DAY celebrations.

Voluntary Counselling for sessions for people living with disabilities d

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from Domestic violence


Sexual Violence
in partnership with local agencies in southwest Nigeria.


Amongst many others from several academic awards from secondary school and personality recognition awards from students.

He was awarded the Psychiatric nurse of the year 2016 by National Association of Nigerian nurses and midwives Nigeria.

Amway Healthcare Hero Award 2020 in the UK. These amongst many.



He’s married with kids

He currently work in Eastbourne district general hospital in the UK. He’s one of the COVID 19 escalation team member.