Three subjects have dominated headlines in our country in the last few days, about 10 days now. These are the bombshell dethronement of Sanusi Lamido Sanusi as Emir of the revered throne of Kano, the devastating Lagos explosion which rocked Abule Ado close to Festac Town, and the Coronavirus pandemic.
The explosion came in a dramatic, sudden destructive wave killing no fewer than 18 persons, among them a whole family, school principal and some of her pupils during Sunday Mass. The lingering tragedy is the Coronavirus which has seized the whole world by the jugular. It has driven cold shivers down the spine of no fewer than 150 countries, bowing heads and sending mankind down on their knees.
For a long, long time, mankind is forced to realise their smallness. The bullies were silenced; the boastful casting confident glance at the arsenals in the armoury and technological wonders in their backyard saw how ephemeral in the face of quiet, yet awesome power that resides in, hold it, a virus, these could be. The virus killed 368 persons in Italy in just 24 hours! Wuhan the epicenter of the plague became a ghost town.
Consider the frightening rate of the spread in other places, confirmed cases: Iran in Week 1- Two cases; Week 2—43; Week 3—245; Week 4—4,747; and Week 5—12,729. Italy in Week 1—Three cases: Week 2—152; Week 3—1,036; Week 4—6,362; and Week 5—21,157. France in Week 1—12; Week 2—191; Week 3—653 and Week 4—4,499. Deaths totalled 97. New York alone in Week 1—2; Week 2—105; Week 3—613. The United States as a whole: 2,952 cases and 57 deaths; United Kingdom: 1,140 cases and 21 deaths; Switzerland; 1, 359 cases with 13 deaths; Spain: 6,250 cases with 193 deaths; Sweden: 961 cases, two deaths; South Korea: 8,162 cases, 75 deaths; Japan: 787 cases, 29 deaths and Germany—3,062 cases and six deaths; China 81,048 cases and 3,204 deaths.
No report has been more disturbing than the one posted to me said to be a letter from Italy. It reads in part: “We are currently in quarantine. We don’t take to the streets, the police are in constant motion and they arrest anyone outside his home. Everything is closed—-business, malls, stores, all streets without movement. Feeling of the end of the world!! Italy the country of living life, is transformed from one moment to the next as if it were a dark country of war. It is a fact that I never thought I would ever live! People are confused, sad, anxious and helpless, and often do not understand how this reality was imposed on them and when the whole nightmare will end. The big mistake was that at the start of the first hit people continued to lead their lives as usual and took to the streets for work, entertainment and feeling like a vacation period, so gatherings with friends and banquets abound. Everyone was wrong. I beg you, be careful, this is neither a laugh nor a joke.”
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It further reads: “About 200 people die here every day, not because medicine in Milan is not good (it’s one of the best in the world), but rather because there are no places for everyone. Doctors choose who will die! This is only because of the silliness of the citizens at the beginning who decided to continue their lives as usual, regardless of the new situation!… In Italy, the entire country is isolated, meaning 60 million people in quarantine!!”
Flights from and to high risks countries are being banned in many countries with the attendant plunge in economy. It is such a crisis point that Mr. Trump has to invoke what he calls Defence Production Act through using his executive powers. The Act authorizes a U.S. president to force any American company to produce what the populace critically needs in crisis period as in the present case materials such as respirators and protective cloak for essential services workers. United States and Canada agreed to close borders to what may be regarded as non-essential travels.
The confirmed cases in Nigeria have suddenly risen by five yesterday bringing the number of index cases to eight. This coincided with the report of a government committee on the dreadful disease. Just as well amidst anxieties by Nigerians, the government has risen to take precautionary and containment measures, banning flights from high-risk countries and suspending travels by all functionaries of government for whatever reason. All previous approvals for trips have consequently been cancelled.
Governors in the North-West Zone ordered that all schools in the region be closed for the next 30 days. The decision came at their meeting in Katsina primarily to review the security challenges when they were confronted with news of COVID-19 berthing in Kaduna. Lagos State Government yesterday banned religious congregational service at which over 50 persons are gathered. The announcement was made after a meeting with religious leaders from all over the state, notably among them Lagos Chairman of Christian Association of Nigeria and the Chief Imam of Lagos State. National Youth Service authorities also swiftly shut all orientation camps for the new set and all participants were given letters of their primary assignment so they could disperse.
That Coronavirus has caught the whole world is evidence of how deep we human beings have been in slumber. As it is revealed in the higher knowledge spreading on earth today, there is the Law of the Cycle. This law over a period of 100 years cycle throws into the faces of human beings certain kinds of ripened fruits of seeds collectively sowed into the soil of life. So is it that it was possible for Nostradamus to gaze into these times and predict a plague that would occur in 2020. The earth has been plagued struck in 1720, 1820, 1920 and now 2020. Those who preoccupy themselves with the Law of Numbers would say yes, COVID-19 came in December 2019 but would be quick to point to the movement of constellations and arrive at 2020. We learn that The Law of Numbers enables light threads to lead mankind to the knowledge of God’s Will which God in His immense Love allowed to come into existence. “Numbers the essence of All Things’’ for example reveal 1 as the Number of the Almighty Father; 2-Creation; 3-Light. While I may skip other numbers since numerology is not the focus of today’s conversation, I must hasten to say that 5 is the Number of Love and that is Jesus the Lord, and 7-the Number of the Will which is also Justice, the Number of Perfection. Pythagoras, who lived in 6B.C. was later to pronounce one of the most well-known statements when he was reported to have said that “The number is the essence of all things.”
This is indeed a bleak, icy time. Everywhere, everyone, low or mighty, it would appear, is inching towards a cage, the four walls of which are moving towards one another by the minute to suffocate and to annihilate the occupants. The present state of affairs is no less a product of human thoughts than assertions by way of boasts, thoughts of conquering, subdue or subjugate others. Yesterday’s thoughts and assertions were the building blocks of today, and today’s thoughts are the building blocks of tomorrow, of the future state of affairs. A man cannot rise above his thoughts. He is in fact where his thoughts are, a product of them, formed by them, uplifted or shattered by them. And where is that man who is not at the level of his thoughts? And this is where the collective guilt comes in.
Thoughts have forms, to be certain, and are alive, dependent on the authors who nourish them with their propensities. Thoughts are magnetic, too, connected to their origins, ever returning there in full bloom, like vapour to rivers or seas, or the seasons or even the politician inexorably to their starting points. They emerge from the forming, kindred magnetic mind to wander and to bring to flower the volition or abilities inherent in them. But inexorably they return someday in the harvest to give to the authors what they had asked for in multiple folds. The harvest in the case of COVID-19 brings sobriety and opportunity for inner contemplation, and rejoicing—rejoicing over the opportunity of the state of affairs which is the pressure for a man to recognise his smallness, and break down the wall that has caged the human spirit in bondage, immense opportunities for a questioning mind: What is happening? It must appear to the discerning that a great many among mankind are being made to wander away from the currents of Life. But he who seeks earnestly finds. Developing vaccines to battle COVID-19 is not just the finding. That can only be a temporary relief. The finding is in hitting upon the knowledge that shows the correlations and lawfulness that govern life.