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COVID-19: HEDA’s survey knocks FG, states’ response

A civil society organisation, Human and Environmental Development Agenda (HEDA), said the COVID-19 pandemic has exposed the weak response capacity of the federal and state governments. Addressing journalists in Lagos at the public presentation of the organisation’s report, titled, Leadership Approval Rating: Citizens Perception of Leadership and Governance in Nigeria, Chairman of HEDA, Mr. Olanrewaju Suraju, said the research was informed by the need to examine the level of the response of the Federal Government to the pandemic in particular and citizens’ demand in general.

Suraju said the research was conducted to also measure the trust of citizens in the government and measure the credibility of the value currency of government with the citizens. He said: “In Nigeria, government responses to public needs remain a major source of concern.

The current COVID-19 pandemic has further exposed the weak capacity of the government to understand and respond to the needs and aspirations of Nigerians.” According to him, the outcomes will surely strengthen public participation in the democratic process and provide a challenge in measuring the level of government response to the COVID-19 scourge. “According to respondents, public officials did not do enough to meet global standards rated in their poor management of information, public education, swift responses to public health needs, sharing of palliatives and constructive engagement of the critical sector.”

Speaking on the technical reports on methodology and findings of the survey, founder of FactBox, Mr. Babajide Ogunsanwo, a survey and data analysis organisation, said Nigeria is witnessing six decades of not measuring citizens’ mood, compared to the US where all decisions are based on surveys and polls.

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