By Ama Chukwugoziem (Abia Writers)
Edited by Nwabunwanne David 
The Rivers state and Nigerian airwaves have been awash with Governor Wike's demolition of two hotels for violating the Rivers state Executive Order 6. Governor Nyensom Wike issued the Executive Order to lock down the state to prevent the spread of coronavirus. Two hotels, Prodest hotel Alode and Etemeteh hotel Onne flouted the order to stop operation. 

Prodest Hotel hosted a large party, which prompted members of the COVID 19 task force to go there and told them to stop, but the owner of the hotel and his gang attacked the task force members. The governor was enraged that not only did they violate the Executive Order, but the owner of Prodest Hotel also organized thugs who attacked task force members. As I write, one of the members of the task force has died of the gunshot injury he sustained in the attack.

For the past six months, the world has been battling this deadly pandemic called COVID-19. The World Health Organization (WHO) cannot give an accurate account of how this pandemic came into existence, thereby putting the globe at risk and severe confusion. Although, many theories and findings are pointing fingers that one laboratory in a Chinese city of Wuhan manufactured the virus.

The World Health Organization and the world are disconcerted at the high number of deaths so far recorded under this virus COVID-19. The fast rate of its spread has made many experts, epidemiologists, and pathologists alike to think again. The rate of infections and deaths from this coronavirus is indescribable. Considering this unprecedented number of deaths, WHO came out with guidelines to governments around the world to save lives, which led to the lockdown the world is experiencing now.

The reproduction rate is a disease's ability to spread; the number of people one infected person can pass the virus on to. Because of the high production rate of this virus, governments everywhere are doing everything possible to force down the spread of the virus. This move explains why children have been off schools, markets and places of work closed down, those who can are advised to work from home. Religious gatherings and social gatherings such as sports, parties and other related activities have all stopped to minimize contact and cut the virus ability to spread.

Social distancing is one of the significant ways to reduce the spread of this deadly pandemic. This is why social gathering and other activities that bring a large number of people together were stopped all over the world. WHO and specialists put these measures in place to guard against the deadly pandemic. Given this, the executive governor of Rivers state issued an Executive Order to lock down the state, which meant that schools, markets, churches, hotels etc. must shut down. Why must this life saving order be violated? 

Two hotels in Rivers state were operating in contravention of the Executive Order issued by the governor. As if this offence is not enough, the owner of Prodest hotel and his gang attacked and injured members of the task force. One of the task force members died due to the gunshot wound he sustained. Do you expect the governor to fold his hands and watch while an individual endangers the lives of his citizens? The governor duly sent a team to go and bring down the hotels for the reckless and lawless actions of their owners and for attacking members of the task force. 

Some people now want to play politics with this situation, blaming the governor for demolishing the hotels instead of confiscating or closing them down. My question to these people is, which one is more important between the hotel and the lives of Rivers people? After seeing the devastation caused by this virus in the US, Spain and Italy, countries far more developed medically than Nigeria, one wonders what the motive of the owners of the hotel is.

People are shouting Wike, Wike, as if this is the first time government demolished houses in Nigeria. Pause a little and think back what the present Kaduna state governor did to Biafrans when he was the minister of federal capital territory Abuja. Remember how he demolished houses built by Biafrans in Abuja even causing multiple deaths of Biafran. Now tell us how justifiable what Mallam Nasir Ahmad El-Rufai did as against what governor Nyensom Wike did in saving many lives under COVID-19. The same El-Rufai as Kaduna state governor demolished many houses in Kaduna. Lagos state government has been destroying homes and business places, and none has generated half the noise generated by this Wike's action. Those shouting against Nyensom Wike's action are the real enemies of the people who want to infect our land with the deadly coronavirus.
A stitch in time saves nine.
Biafra restoration is our last hope.
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