The Infectious Disease bill, which was proposed by a Speaker of the Federal House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila, seeks to provide an updated basis for the Government’s anti-pandemic efforts, replacing the National Quarantine Act of 2004. According to reports, the bill is supposed to create a legal framework for the Federal Government to manage special circumstances surrounding infectious disease outbreaks, like the current Covid-19 pandemic, and also prevent the spread.
However, critics have expressed fears that it could be open to abuse by government officials. The bill gives disproportionate powers to the Minister of Health and the Director-General of the Nigerian Centre for Disease Control (NCDC). It also gives the NCDC DG the power to close down premises deemed to be overcrowded, in a country where millions live in cramped spaces, while officials authorized by him will be able to detain individuals without any warrant.
M.I Abaga took to his Twitter page to admonish Nigerians to join him in campaigning against the bill but also advised they do their research so as to understand more about the bill.
Say no to the #InfectiousDiseaseBill
If you agree please share RT or comment!!! pic.twitter.com/pUMuGLl2rU
— Yung denzL (@MI_Abaga) May 4, 2020