Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Lockdown: Delta State Civil Society Initiates Action On COVID-19 Pandemic, Restates Partnership With DTSG, Applauds Okowa, Delta Citizens

.....Urges Security Agencies on professionalism, adherence to human rights

...Commends Stakeholders Support on Palliative measures

By Victor Bieni


As part of the efforts to support the fight against global Coronavirus pandemic diseases in Nigeria, Delta State precisely through the collaboration with Stakeholders, over thirty - five Civil Society Leaders in Delta State under the aegis of " Delta State Civil Society  Community" working with the Senior Special Assistant to Governor On Civil Society and Civic Engagement, Hon. Rex Anighoro has unanimously agreed after a meeting of the Leaders of the Civil Society Community to partner the Delta State Government by initiating the ' Civil Society Action on Covid - 19'.

This was disclosed to our reporter in a Press Statement signed by  over thirty - five Civil Society Leaders in Delta State who applauded the Executive Governor of Delta State, His Excellency,  Governor Ifeanyi Okowa on the palliative measures put in place in Delta towards combating the global Pandemic, which the group said made the state Non- volatile and curtail the spread of the pandemic.

In the words of the group Leaders: "We Civil Society actors on the front lines in response to the current unprecedented threat to humanity by the devastating global pandemic known as Corona Virus (COVID - 19), find it imperative to partner with His Excellency, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa and the Delta State Government in advancing its concerted efforts and decisive actions in combating this catastrophic scourge on mankind".

"The Delta Civil Society Community working in tandem with the United Nations (UN) expectations of us as the conscientious live wire, bastions and custodians of society is collaborating with the Office of the Senior Special Assistant to the Delta State Governor on Civic Engagement and Civil Society being held by Activist Rex Anighoro to initiate the 'Civil Society ACTION on COVID -19".

At the end of the Inaugural online meeting of the Leaders on Friday the 3rd of April, 2020 they  resolved as follows: "We the Delta State Civil Society Community Commends Deltans and non - Deltans residing in the State for their uncommon courage and resilience in complying with the "sit at home" order  by the Delta State Government".

"That the group Commended the Executive Governor of Delta State, His Excellency, Senator (Dr.) Ifeanyi Arthur Okowa and the Delta State Government for proactively putting in place the United Nations recommended measures to combat and decollate Corona virus, (COVID - 19) the invisible deadly virus that respects no borders, attacking society, claiming lives and peoples livelihood".

 "As Civil Society Leaders we Applauded very significantly the State Government's implementation of the  World Health Organization (WHO) comprehensive package of measures of find, test, isolate and treat every case, and trace every contact".

"We affirmed that Worthy of mention also, is the Delta State Government's aggressive public awareness campaign, early establishment and equipping of isolation centres, training of dedicated health workers across the State on COVID - 19 preparedness and case management, fumigation of public places, timely closure of State borders as well as the "sit at home " order regardless of its shattering Social - Economic consequence on the State".

"We State that  it is impressive that all these were achieved despite no case been recorded in the State".

"We Civil Society Leaders herein Called for increased Civil Society and private sector participation and partnership with the Delta State Government in containing and preventing the COVID -19 pandemic in the State".

"We admonished Deltans and non - Deltans to continue to be law abiding and comply with safety protocols as presented to public by the 
Delta State Ministry of Health, the Federal Ministry of Health and the World Health Organisation (WHO).

"We demanded for the respect of Human Rights of all Deltans by Government Officials, Security Agencies and such persons acting on their behalf and alongside with them".

"We vehemently reject extra - judicial killings, extortions, intimidations, molestations, gender abuse on citizens as well as alleged corrupt practices of Security Agents at the State borders who are accused of collecting bribes to flout the border closure orders of the State Government".

" We Stated that a committee of the Delta State Civil Society Community has been mandated to investigate alleged human rights abuses and extra - judicial killings of Deltans in the State".

 "We stated that the Delta State Civil Society Community will not tolerate human right abuses and extra - judicial killings of Deltans".

"We Stated that Civil Society Leaders will with immediate effect set up in each Senatorial District 'ACTION' teams to monitor the COVID - 19 stay at home enforcements alongside security agencies and government officials to ensure compliance with citizens human rights".

"We stated that the 'ACTION' teams will also monitor the prices of commodities and alleged exploitations of traders in the make shift markets by Government Officials who are said to be demanding so much money from the traders before they can trade".

"We  requested that  Delta State Government should  provide welfare palliatives to Deltans and create food banks across the State to support the less privileged and vulnerable in our State to cushion the effect of the lockdown".

"We  Called  on Government, Security Agencies and Community vigilantes to intensify efforts in combating crime as people stay at home. Many cases of home robberies and sexual assault are been daily reported on social media".

"We resolved that Civil Society Leaders will intensify awareness creation and sensitization on COVID - 19 as well as continually educate communities on precautionary  measures and 'Healthy at Home' WHO mandate across the State through social media and grassroot community outreaches. Family cohesion and good neighborliness awareness will be intensified".

"We  Called for  the decongestion of prisons and close monitoring of persons living in congested areas as well sharing overstretched toilets and bathrooms".

 "Additionally, we stated that   Delta Civil Society Community will maintain a common solidarity and partner with stakeholders in halting public incitements and civil disobedience as well as the peddling of fake news on the corona virus (COVID - 19). This is an infodemic with dire consequence as the pandemic itself".

The United Nations recognized group then with collectivity and responsibility restates Commitment and partnership with Delta State Government under the Leadership of Governor Ifeanyi Okowa towards the promotion of peace and security across the State throughout the COVID - 19 pandemic lock down as a sacred duty for the group.

"Together, we will surmount the pandemic and the sustainable development programmes of Delta State will be realized", Delta Civil Society Leaders affirmed.

The press statement was signed by the following Coalitions, Groups, and Civil society Leaders in Delta State. These included amongst others are:Mr Sylvester Itimi, National Secretary, Civil Society Advance Forum on Sustainable Development (CAS2030),
 Deacon Okezi Odugala, Executive Director, Eziodu Initiative for Sustainable Environmental Development (EISED) and Coordinator, Forum of Delta State NGOs, Barr. Duncan Afahokor
Convener, Advocacy Watch,  Activist Atakurhievwe Edmund, State Coordinator
Niger Delta People Salvation Front (NDPSF)

However, followed by  Comrade Fred Akpewe, Coordinator, Campaign for Good Governance and Coalition of NGOs, CSOs and Ex-Agitators in Delta State, Mrs Jemima Anighoro, Secretary Alliance for Social Justice and Human Rights (ASJHR), Chief Monday Itoghor, CEO, Environmental and Rural Mediation Centre (ENVIRUMEDIC), Dr. Ejiro Esiekpe, Program Director, Noble Delta Women for Peace and Development.

Others inclusively are: Amb.(Dr) Eris Jewo, Executive Director Working Fingers Int'l,Coordinator, Civil Society Organization for HIV/AID(CISHAN) Initiator,Association Against Child Sexual and Gender Violence, Mrs Oyovwe Ejiroghene
Coordinator, Delta State Civil Society Volunteers (DCSV), Dr Andrew Agboro, Delta State Civil Society Organization for Good Governance.

Also in the lists of signatories are: Comrade Venture Daniels Evwehanmhre, Coordinator, Director, Advocates of the Global Goals (AGG), Chief Gregg Osamenjor, Executive Director,Initiative for Cultural Heritage, Mrs Tobele.O.Joy, Director, lnitiative for Peace and Stability(IPAS), Mr.Julius Olumukoro, Director,Make Your Life Count,Member, Delta State Task Force on Human Trafficking.

Followed by others: Activist Ughere R.O.Blessed,
Director, Human Right and Good Governance Initiative (HRAGGI) and OSU RE IGHELLE of URHOBO Nation, President General, Urhobo Mudiaga Movement(UMM) Worldwide, Leftist Terry Ajagbawa, Coordinator, Delta Civil Society Organizations (DELSCO), Miss Nzelu Suzzygold Ugochi, Founder,White Angel Foundation.

Also included are: Comrade Williams Asama
Programs Director, Pan African Movement for Peace, Human Rights and Social Change (PAMPHRSC), Mrs Tonbra Kasikoro-Kilopirite, Executive Director Women Initiative for Values Empowerment & Sustainability International(WIVES Int'l),
Amb. Sunny Irakpo,
Founder/President, Silec Initiatives, Mrs Ayo Okotie, Neferok Development Initiative, Comrade David Odeareduo, Program Manager,Environment Protection Promoter Initiative (EPPI).

 Other Civil Society Leaders are: Comrade Egbe.O. Ambrose, National Secretary, Defender of Citizens Common Cause, Mrs Oghale Chukwuma Project Specialist, Agribusiness and Member Project Management Professionals,  Mrs Martha Onose
Community Empowerment and Development Initiative.

Others in the list of signatories are: Comrade, Sir. Best Brume,Executive Director,Integrity Without Borders, Mrs Faith John Onyenenue,
Coordinator, Conscience of Society and Out of Street Campaign, Comrade Okonta Emeka Okelum
State Lead, Connected Development -Delta State Chapter and Convener-GoDev Coalition Nigeria.

Finally, other Civil Society Leaders on the list of Signatories are: Mike Egbune, Esq. Delta State Coordinator, Joint Legal Action Aids (JLAA), Akpederin  Kingsley Ehensiri Esq., People Alliance and General Secretary, the Okpe Union, Comrade Isiakpere Hope Jasper
Founder/Executive Director,
Youth Initiative for Development and Accountability (YIDA),
Comrade Victor Bieni, Founder/CEO,
Delta Cultural Initiative (DCI), Comrade Joshua Ghereje,
Coordinator Delta State Civil Right Council (CRC), Comrade Ibebe Rufus Akpobome,
Founder/Director General
Youth Emancipation Movement of Africa (Yemafrica), Engr. Mrs. Chigbo Queen U.
President/ Director General

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