Tuesday, 5 May 2020

Communique reached at Joint meeting of Coalition of Civil Society against COVID-19 in C/River on 29 April, 2020

5 May 2020 


Good day everyone. 

Gentle men of the press. 

You're welcome to the maiden edition of COALITION of civil society against COVID-19 situation room.  

In the meeting which had in attendance 13 members representing 9 civil society organizations working in Cross River State, met to review the measures taken by the state government to ensure the state and its citizens are safe even when the state is yet to record any confirmed case of coronavirus. 

The COALITION of Civil Society against COVID-19 expressed her gratitude to the government of Cross River State and other relevant stakeholders as well as the Presidential Task Force against COVID-19 for the proactive steps taken so far. We commend the government for early deployment of facilities such as personnel, security operatives, provision of logistics for easy movement and the state boarder closure. 

We are also aware of the various channels deployed by the state government to provide preventive information to the benefits of the public. 

We are also aware of the No-Mask-No-Movement policy implemented by the state among other. We equally thank the government for their efforts in setting up a 100 capacity bed Isolation center in Tinapa, Calabar. 

However, we in the COALITION of civil society against COVID-19 in Cross River State have observed and wish to with immediate effect ask the government to act on the following;
Ensure the state-own Isolation center certified by NCDC covers the three senatorial district of Cross River State. 

That the State task team should step up measures on our land boarders to ensure migrant are not using the route to put the state at risk of the virus especially communities such as the Oban corridor of Cross River National Park, Bakassi, Itu-Bridge, Boki, Etung, Ikom, Bekwara, Obudu etc are well monitored by credible security operative with support of civil society organizations.

That the palliative distribution of food items which has been widely condemned as insufficient as well as its channel of distribution should accommodate members of civil society organization with verifiable data of vulnerable population.

That the government free mask distribution process should be centralized for easy access by members of the public other than compulsory going to the garment factory.

That civil society organization should be involved in the COVID-19 State Task Team for accountability purpose. 

That persons living with disability should be adequately captured in the state response programming such provision should include a sign language translator during each state briefing as obtained in other states broadcast.

That civil society organization should be involved in the state press briefing as observers. 

While we continue to remain law abiding citizens and work toward keeping Cross River COVID-19 free, we shall continue to support the government through monitoring and evaluation of its programmes especially in the face of global health challenge. 

We, on our part shall be willing to support government effort through resourceful skills, qualitative data and remain accountable for the interest of Cross River State. This press briefing shall continue as situation arises. 

We thank you all for coming together as civil society groups to support the fight against COVID-19 virus in the state and Nigeria at large. We thank our various media partners, representatives of persons with disability for their doggedness. 

It is our collective prayer that Cross River State and indeed the world will defeat this dreaded enemy of our time.

Thank you.

Adim Gabriel

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