Lagos NIMC centre crowded, as enrollees disregard social distancing, bemoan process

National Identification Number (NIN) enrollees on Monday trooped out en masse at the Lagos centre of the National Identity Management Commission (NIMC) without observing coronavirus safety protocols, particularly the observance of social distancing.

This is amidst the surge in COVID-19 cases in the state specifically and Nigeria generally.

The enrollees lamented over the uncoordinated process of the NIN registration even as there were no provisions for control of the expected crowd as the deadline for enrollment draws nearer.

Recall that staff members of NIMC suspended its industrial action which they embarked last week Thursday over poor welfare package and the fear of exposure to COVID-19 in the agency and resumed on Monday.

One of the enrolees, Habeeb Ashaka, said that he does not understand what was happening as the staff of the commission left them standing without giving any detailed explanation.

Ashaka said the process is not well-coordinated even as tension is high as a result of the deadline pegged by the government for the registration.

“They are just directing and redirecting us anyhow. We don’t know what they want us to do.

“They are not allowing anyone to enter and they are not discussing what is happening with anyone. I have been here since past 9 but I met someone who had registered since 3 am,” Ashaka said.

Another enrollee, Nneka Chisom said she had been at the centre since 8 am but other enrollees are not complying with instructions on social distancing.

“I have been here since 8 am and I have been booked since last week Thursday.

“We are not even clear on what they want to do. Some are not complying with the queue advisory,” Chisom said.

Amaka Ezeogwu, who was carrying a baby under the scorching sun, lamented that staff members of the commission lack organization in the discharge of their duties because provision ought to have been made for people of her category.

Ezeogwu, therefore, said that she is adequately prepared for the COVID-19 protocol as she was with sanitiser and face mask.

“I have been here since 5 am and I am carrying a baby. They are not saying anything but they are still attending to people that came last week.

“I am prepared for the coronavirus since I came with my sanitiser and face mask.”

Kehinde Olowojobe expressed anxiety over the coronavirus as it is deadlier but feared the deadline given by the Federal Government.

“I am scared of coronavirus but they are leaving us with no options. MTN is asking me to get my NIN before I could do anything,” Olowojobe said.

Madam Vera blamed the commission for the non-adherence to the safety protocols towards curbing the spread of the coronavirus.

She said that the crowd is the reason why she is distancing herself alone place because one could never tell who the carrier is.

“They are not attending to people. That is why I have been there and I don’t want to attach myself to the crowd.

“They should avoid gathering. They are the ones causing everything,” Vera said.

Baba Alayo, who brought her amputated father for the registration, said the process is not encouraging as it took a long process for his dad to be considered for the exercise.

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