When literary giant and Nobel laureate Prof Wole Soyinka criticized the federal government for imposing a lockdown on two states and Abuja, there was a Twitter debate as to his locus in the issue whiles maintaining that he reserved the right to his opinions.
The presidency responded to Soyinka’s critique in a press statement signed by Buhari’s spokesperson, Garba Shehu.
Part of the statement read: “Prof Soyinka is not a medical professor. His qualifications are in English literature, and his prizes are for writing books, and plays for theatre. He is of course entitled to his opinions… but they cannot – and should not – be judged as professional expertise in this matter.”
The statement went on to cite how lockdowns in these times have become a key measure employed strategically by governments in the interest of public interest and health.
“Perhaps Wole Soyinka may write a play on the coronavirus pandemic, after this emergency is over. In the meantime, we ask the people of Nigeria to trust the words of our doctors and scientists – and not fiction writers – at this time of national crisis,” the statement concluded.
Nigeria’s case tally update as at April one: Twenty-three new cases reported; 9 in Lagos, 7 in the FCT (Abuja), 5 in Akwa Ibom, 1 in Kaduna and 1 in Bauchi State. As at 08:00 pm 1st April there are 174 confirmed cases. Nine have been discharged with two deaths
The Nigeria Disease Control Center has meanwhile acknowledged receipt of a coronavirus donation by CEO of Ali Baba, Jack Ma. The NCDC has since allocated the package to all states across the country.