January 21, 2021

COVID-19: Gov Bello entitled to his opinion, but shouldn’t risk Kogi people’s lives— NGF

COVID-19: Gov Bello entitled to his opinion, but shouldn't risks his people's lives— NGF

A screen grab of Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State and Chairman, Nigeria Governors’ Forum on Channels TV.

A screenshot of Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State and Chairman, Nigeria Governors’ Forum on Channels TV.

*Says Akeredolu can protect Ondo citizens within laws

The Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, has said Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State is entitled to his opinion over the reality or otherwise of the COVID-19 pandemic and the purpose of the vaccines, but that he should not risk the lives of the citizens of his state.

The Forum noted that leaders have a duty to protect citizens, so it (NGF) owes no one any apology over its decision to work with other agencies towards finding a solution to the pandemic.

Governor Kayode Fayemi of Ekiti State and Chairman Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, made the statements on Channels TV Politics Today monitored by Vanguard, on Thursday.

READ ALSO: COVID-19: Yahaya Bello, Bolsonaro and the battle against truth

On the ultimatum given to armed herders to vacate Ondo forests by Governor Rotimi Akeredolu, the NGF said the governor cannot be faulted for protecting the people that voted him into power.

Fayemi said: “We would always be concerned about security and we are working with all the institutions of state responsible for security to ensure those involved in criminal enterprises are brought to book.

“The interest of Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, is not to engage in political brickbat but to stem the tide of insecurity.

“We have met with the President and have proffered our solutions and will continue to engage the authorities.

“If the interest of the governor of Ondo State is to protect the citizens that elected him into office, you cannot quarrel with him over that.

“But in doing that, there is also the need to strictly adhere to the laws of the land.”

Governor Bello and COVID-19

Governor Yahaya Bello of Kogi State had stated that the Covid-19 vaccines were meant to kill people. Read the story HERE.

However, asked to comment of Bello’s stance, Fayemi said: “We occupy responsible leadership positions and positions of trust.

“When our citizens are concerned about their healthcare, I don’t think the most appropriate way to respond is to be dismissive of their fears.

“I can assure you that the preponderance of views at the level of the Nigeria Governors’ Forum, NGF, believe that COVID-19 is real and we need to respond to the challenges that have emanated from the pandemic.

READ ALSO: Herdsmen: Makinde, Akeredolu right to issue orders — Olu Agunloye

“This is not just a health issue for us. It is an economic issue and a security issue. It behoves us as leaders to work in concert and in unity with the federal authorities.

“This is not a Nigeria problem. So if the intention is to eliminate Nigerians for whatever reason— if you are to believe the approach taken by my brother and neighbour from Kogi State(Governor Bello)— then it’s a case of you believe this you believe anything.

“I understand who also feels we should not just give up because of COVID- 19 and not continue to run our lives and economy. We don’t want complete lockdown.

“We are not talking of just pharmaceutical responses, but non-pharmaceutical responses as well. It’s for the good of our people. People are dying, even in Kogi State.

“We will continue to appeal to our brother. He may have a different opinion, which he is entitled to. But he should nor risk the lives of the citizens of his state.”

Vanguard News Nigeria