AKSG: Time to Give More Attention to our Borders

By Ekemini Simon



The Akwa Ibom State government weeks ago signed into operation the Quarantine and Restriction of movement Regulations 2020.



This law provided for the closure of all borders into the State. That’s a very plausible step.



However, the way and manner Covid-19 is raging across the country calls for not just laws to be made but practical steps to be taken to ensure these laws are thoroughly enforced.



Sadly, credible information available to this reporter indicates that people are still surreptitiously coming in and out of our dear State.



It is either they heavily bribe their way in and out or they use routes security personnel will never expect could be used.



The current route experiencing unhindered access is in Ika Local Government Area which share boundary with Abia State.


RELATED: Akwa Ibom State And The COVID-19 Pandemic


The roads there are simply terrible hence security personnel and perhaps government do not imagine people will use there as alternative route to gain entry into the State. Transporters who are determined to make their money do not mind passing through hell to convey people in and out through the Ika route. According to residents of the area, transporters ply their roads gleefully and unhindered.



As our borders remain porous, needless to mention that this could lead to alarming increase in the spread of Covid-19 in the State. It is not rational enough for the State government to dispense all their energy only on stopping movement within the State when people are still finding their way into your State. That’s for me is an oversight too expensive. This is neither a time for dilly-dallying nor a time to put a sheen on the malaise. If we ignore our borders, it will exacerbate our problems.



To address this, there is urgent need for the machinery of government to visit that area, collaborate with the indigenes of the area to ensure no one comes into the State through their community. it is imperative the State Government also sit on the table with heads of security agencies to see how they can dispatch incorruptible or at least trustworthy men to our borders. Officials who see their stay at the border as a means to enrich themselves will simply be selling our lives to the dreaded virus. Yes, we still have respected men in the force and the high officials know these men too. The State government should negotiate for such men to be dispatched to such sensitive points.



These indeed are not normal times thus the State government must be on top of their game in filling all the loopholes towards protecting the lives of her citizens. They must keep their ears to the ground and act quickly. Just as the Governor assured the State, he must lead from the front.



We must not allow a spike in Covid-19 through our carelessness at our borders. Let’s be focused on addressing the already numerous suspected cases else we will be overwhelmed.



Circumspection not ostentation is needed at this point.

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