Hunger will be next deadly virus – Gov Ayade says as he opposes total lockdown

Governor Ben Ayade of Cross River State has opposed the extension of the total lockdown order, issued by President Buhari yesterday following increased cases of Coronavirus in the country.

Ben Ayade who has already ordered Cross River State civil servants back to work, stated that means of livelihood should also be sustained even though the federal government is making effort to protect the lives of citizens. 

In a statement released by Christian Ita, his special adviser on media and publicity, the Cross River Governor said; 

“Protecting lives without protecting livelihoods of Nigerians will spell doom for the nation after COVID-19 as hunger will be the next deadly virus. Globally, hunger and hunger-related diseases like kwashiorkor and tuberculosis kill about 8.4 million people every year and so there is more pandemic when it comes to hunger. 

“So, we will do all we can to curtail the pandemic from spreading to our state and protect lives too, but protection of lives without the protection of livelihoods is a complete imbalance. There must be a holy matrimony between protection of lives and protection of livelihoods.

“Some of our brothers and sisters depend on daily work. If you carry blocks for a living, the day you are stopped from going to work, there will be no money to feed the children.

“We are preparing ourselves for the post coronavirus era when the planting season is just coming with the onset of the rains.

“We have prepared ourselves to be the biggest rice producers in the country with the Ogoja rice mill which is the most professional and the first vitaminized rice mill in Africa, and is currently undergoing a dry test and by May we should be ready to start milling.”

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