By December 23, 2021, Nigeria had recorded about 230,000 cases of COVID. These were the total cases since the COVID started in February 2020. The fourth wave showed that there were 4000 cases in a day, which was a record. This concerned the Nigerian health authorities a great deal. And they went on to implement security measures to curb the fourth wave. This meant that they asked the public not to attend public gatherings and to wear masks all the time. They weren’t successful in implementing such measures because Christmas was near. This meant that the public Gathering couldn’t have been avoided.
Nigeria Center for Disease Control (NCDC) said that the omicron variant caused this. To prevent the virus from spreading, the NCDC asked people not to travel because the omicron variant is highly transmissible. To control the virus, the Nigerian authorities also went on to destroy about a million vaccines of AstraZeneca in front of the public, stating that they were expired. Furthermore, they told people that most myths about the vaccine were untrue. The Nigerian President received the booster shot, and it was televised to the whole of Nigeria. This was done to encourage more people to get the vaccine.
Another such attempt to control the virus was contact tracing. This contact tracing manually traced infected individuals. But that wasn’t effective because contact tracing relied on people’s memory, and there was no database to maintain the records of the people; thus, mostly the case of transmission was unknown. Also, there were no plans to upgrade this system which meant that this way was highly ineffective and couldn’t work in the long term perspective.
The government of Nigeria introduced public health campaigns to educate people on the virus. The means employed were advertisements, social media, leaflets, etc. The people thought that they were at low risk for catching the infection, which was very untrue, and that was one of the reasons they weren’t taking preventive measures very seriously. And thus, the cases were increasing. So the authorities were very concerned over the public’s reaction to the virus because the public had a very poor approach to handling the virus. There were blunders on the government part as well because, in the beginning, they hadn’t taken the virus very seriously as well.