A Follow-Up on the Ebola Lockdown in Sierra Leone
There was a time in the living distant past when Sierra Leoneans would afford a ‘’benefit-of-the-doubt’’ doctrine when reacting to government response on issues of national emergency. Not that those days of untainted innocence didn’t have their negatives, but at least, they speared us the blushes we normally derived from inhumane, self-inflicted complications.
The decision taken by the government of President Dr. Ernest Bai Koroma to enforce a three-day lockdown in Sierra Leone might have provoked a barrage of criticisms from a terrified public daunted by the massive scale of Ebola deaths in the country, but, on the face of it, the government had a leadership responsibility to try out different options as the situation warrants. A deadly Ebola outbreak of this nature definitely demands extreme measures of reactionary vigilance.
Pharmaceutical companies currently engaged in the search for a suitable drug, vaccine or treatments have been busy trying out different options. Their vested production publicity is being justly construed throughout the world media as a foremost humanitarian gesture than a profit-making business venture. The doctrine therefore, that every single life is precious could never be more emphasized. The victims and their loved ones now look forward to the discovery with a spirited sense of hope!
On a disparaging contrary of purely African bad-faith extract, we have all come to see that when government embarked on a nationwide lockdown to further raise protective awareness in the country, it was misconstrued by many as a publicity stunt!
Every nation in the world prides itself over its national integrity. Every state has an independent treasure of national intelligentsia that can potentially produce ‘home made’ initiatives to resolve problems of the state. Humanitarian organizations and the international community stand to respect more those who take the lead in solving their own national problems than those who surrender an incompetent image to the IC, bereft of any national initiative of their own. Supportively, the lockdown has been commended nationally and in every spectrum of the world media as one extra effort in the right direction. What remains indisputable about the Ebola virus is that, all of us, including the world of medics, are still in a process of trial and error!
The truth of the matter though is that, however much we try to keep the politics out of this national tragedy, the cynical bandwagon of ‘power-bloody’ political snipers, lurking in the shadows of unrighteousness, and always on the lookout for any given opportunity to shoot down whatever responsible policy the government puts in place to remedy an unfortunate situation.
The heartlessness of the majority of our politicians is a characteristic that has long been on display and comes in different vices. The fear in many people’s mind is that, if these desperate politicians can play politics of dividend during such a dire situation of massive deaths, what on earth can stop them from creating another ‘Ebola’ situation even after the real Ebola virus has been conquered!
Sierra Leone needs a divine intervention more than ever in our age-old independence history!
By Unisa Kanu – Saudi Arabia
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