By Professor Ibeawuchi (Frank) Amagwu (PhD, HCIB, WAAD)
A few weeks ago, the social media was awash with the news of the outbreak of a deadly disease called Coronavirus. The reported cases of deaths associated with this disease across the globe are now of great concern to nations and governments.
The origin of this disease has been traced to the People’s Republic of China and given the prominent position of Chinese economy in the global economic arrangements,there is no doubt the spread of this disease cannot be over estimated.
This development has both multiplier effects on all aspects of human existence and the global economy. And like several other Contagious diseases before now, with global effects and attention there is every likelihood that the impacts of the Coronavirus would be ameliorated in the foreseeable future.
However, as governments and the health sector including various stakeholders battle to stem the wave of the spread and associated deaths, the responses of the people are critical to survival.
If people and goods cannot move freely across the globe, there is little or no guarantee of international trade and tourism. The obvious benefits of globalization is undoubtedly heading for the back seat and eventual death..Though no nation or economy is immune to the benefits and interdependence of global Economies, Nigeria and Africa are particularly susceptible.
Interestingly the nations in Africa are blessed with the requisite human and material resources to gain from a backward economic integration ..This was the situation before the coming of Globalization.
No doubt the threat to human existence from the contemporary Coronavirus is a wake up call for Africans to resist the temptations of imported goods and unmitigated tourism.
In addition to savings from our insatiable appetite for imported goods, the rush to China, Europe and America at the slightest excuses would save sufficient foreign exchange to enable the government focus on our local economic integration and infrastructural development.
Those who are itching to go abroad for business and summer this year should take a second look at the implications of contacting this dreaded disease. Beyond the humiliation of immigrants at various airports and borders from screening and associated quarantine of suspected cases, rational and discerning Nigerians/Africans should begin the process of paradigm shift in character and attitudes.
The ‘think home’ orientation should begin now…At no other time is this necessary to save humanity imminent existinction.
The fear of Coronavirus and its obvious impact on human existence is the beginning of wisdom.
In the foreseeable future markets and economic dynamics would react to this development and only those with strong resistance and workable alternatives will survive the negative impacts.
Nigeria/African response should be positive and proactive and not panic to the situation at hand.