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Coronavirus lockdown! ‘Write a play on pandemic later’ – Presidency replies Soyinka

Soyinka

The presidency has replied Prof. Wole Soyinka over his comment that the declaration of a total lockdown in Lagos and Ogun states by President Muhammadu Buhari was illegal.

The presidency, in a statement issued by Presidential spokesman, Garba Shehu politely told Soyinka off over his comment.

Read the statement below:

Yesterday, the esteemed Nobel Laureate, Prof. Wole Soyinka made comments on the legal status and description of a 14-day lockdown announced by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Professor Soyinka is not a medical professor. His qualifications are in English literature, and his prizes are for writing books and plays for theatres.

Across the world…mandated lockdowns are in place to slow and defeat the spread of coronavirus.

The Government’s primary duty in law and action is the defence of the people of Nigeria. We face a global pandemic. Nigeria is now affected. The scientific and medical guidance the world over is clear: the way to defeat the virus is to halt its spread through limitation of movement of people.

Professor Soyinka has also declared, doubtless based on his specialism as a playwright, that: ‘We are not in a war emergency,’

Eminent scientists say otherwise: Dr. Richard Hatchett, Head of the International Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (and former Director of the US Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority) has said, ‘War is an appropriate analogy’

Professor Anthony Fauci, Director of the United States National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and member of the White House Coronavirus Task Force has said of the battle against the pandemic: ‘It’s almost like the fog of war’.

As for the legality of the lockdown, the Government of Nigeria’s primary duty in law and action is the defense of the people of Nigeria. We face a global pandemic. Nigeria is now affected. The scientific and medical guidance the world over is clear: the way to defeat the virus is to halt its spread through the limitation of the movement of people.

Perhaps Wole Soyinka may write a play on the coronavirus pandemic after this emergency is over.

In the meantime, we ask the people of Nigeria to trust the words of our doctors and scientists – and not fiction writers – at this time of national crisis.

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