COVID-19: Sanwo-olu should rethink market opening hours

I think the Lagos government needs to have a rethink of its strategy. I believe the restrictions on market timings are counterproductive. I was in the market on Friday and it was not a good experience. Many people were rushing to do their shopping within the time allocated and this nullified the social distance campaign. The entry gates were locked by 3pm and we had to rush to leave through a small gate that was left open.

What I think should be done is to allow people in the markets as we normally do but to enforce the use of face masks by deploying security agents to the markets to ensure this.

I saw a video of a well organised local market in India where the sellers were lined up and the buyers also queued up in front of them with their masks while maintaining social distance. These are some of the things the government can do rather than threaten to enforce another lockdown.

If they don’t have enough officials to monitor, then they can create a schedule for the markets to open while they can monitor. Supermarkets can engage in social distancing by restricting the number of people entering such spaces at a time.

The government should realise that it takes time for people to adapt to new situations, more so in a population with a lot of illiterates and semi literates. They need to deploy officials to ensure compliance.

Locking down Lagos again is far from the solution.

 

Naimah Arowona

Lekki, Lagos

 

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