Coronavirus: Group solicits awareness in local, pidgin language

 Christian Empowerment Forum, a non-governmental organisation, has urged the media to disseminate information on Coronavirus (COVID-19) in local languages, especially Pidgin English and other major languages.

Mr Ifunnaya Ogbonnaya, the executive director of the group, said this in a statement issued in Abuja, following the recent report of the virus in Lagos.

Ogbonnaya said that spreading information on the signs and symptoms, dangers, and prevention measures to adopt against the virus would help in the fight against the killer disease.

According to him, the preventive measures to adopt against the virus should not be left to only the elites in society, but should also be made to reach all nooks and crannies.

“It is the elites of the society that know about the outbreak of the Coronavirus in China way before it even found an entrance into the country.

“It is still this exposed group in the society that is being alerted of its presence in the country and on possible ways to prevent it.

“The uneducated, in exposed group of the society may not be getting this information as much as the other group.

“Especially those in the villages who have no access to modern facilities such as television, radio sets, smart phones and even newspapers,’’ he said.

He said that spreading the news via the various Nigerian languages and in pidgin language would bridge the gaps in communication and create more awareness.

Ogbonnaya advised parents and guidance to educate their children and wards on the virus, its signs, symptoms and prevention measures.

He said that the job of creating awareness and preventing the spread of the virus could not be left alone to the government.

“Everyone has a role to play in this fight; from the media to parents and guidance, school authorities, religious bodies, medical outlets and hospitals and both private and public job institutes and establishments.

“If everyone plays their part effectively, we may just be recording the first and the last case of the virus in Nigeria,’’ he said.

He advised every citizen to follow and adopt all prescribed preventive measures by the World Health Organisation (WHO) and medical experts.

He also advised Nigerians to boost their personal hygiene by procuring necessary sanitary tools like hand sanitisers, tissue papers, handkerchiefs, napkins and wipes, medicated bathing and hand soaps.

He said the virus was quite similar to other viruses in the past and prayed that the disease would be completely eradicated by God for humanity and mercy sake.

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