Coronavirus in Nigeria: Big Data Exposing How the People Feel About it All.

In the wake of the Coronavirus pandemic in Nigeria, we carried out a nationwide survey in the month of March, using our Data Capture and Analytics Platform, BioRegistra. This we did to gather the opinions of Nigerians regarding the Coronavirus pandemic and how well the country is prepared for it.

Below is the result of the survey:

Awareness about the virus

We asked the audience if they are aware of the pandemic, Coronavirus (COVID 19)? It was encouraging when 100% of the audience selected the option ‘Yes, I am’.

Other options were ‘Maybe. I still think it’s fake news’ and ‘No. I have no idea what that is’.

Coronavirus in Nigeria

This time, we asked our audience if they believe the news that there is Coronavirus in Nigeria. 86.8% of the respondents believe that there is coronavirus in Nigeria. 10.5% say they are not completely sold on the news as something sounds fishy. The remaining 2.6% do not believe and think it’s all propaganda … Yikes!

Fear of the outcome

Does the idea that the virus is near scare you? We know fear doesn’t help, but it’s one emotion that will be predominant this period. Our data shows that 73.7% of the audience are scared to their bones that the virus is in Nigeria. 21.1% of them are only slightly bothered, while 5.2% are not shaken as they still doubt the news. For the 5.2%, it might be their strong belief in the idiom that ‘what you don’t know won’t hurt you’, or just pure unbelief in the face of alarming evidence.

Nigeria’s readiness to fight

The fight is tough, even for more advanced countries with their vast knowledge and know-how, especially because of past successful dealings with pandemics. So what about Nigeria, how equipped are we to deal with this virus?

42.1% (the majority) of our audience think Nigeria is not equipped to fight the virus alone. 7.9% believe Nigeria is doomed! And 13.3% will prefer to watch and see. For the positives: 5.3% believe Nigeria has all it takes to combat the virus alone, while 31.6% believe we can do even better with external help.

Willingness to get tested and quarantined

One effective way to truly flatten the curve will be to test more and get positive people into quarantine. So let’s say there were more test kits, will Nigerians be willing to comply?

6.5% of our audience are indeed willing to get tested for the virus and quarantined if necessary. 26.3% will get tested but would rather self-isolate… which is still another good measure. However, it is disconcerting that the rest of the respondents, which is the majority, believe they cannot have the virus either because of their strong immune system or that God will forbid it.

It is important to note that there is an option that says ‘No. I don’t trust the health system’, but none of the audience went for that option

The future: A Coronavirus-free Nigeria

Now, this is a future we all look forward to and hope will be sooner than later. We asked our audience what/who they think will be responsible for a Coronavirus-free Nigeria, and this is what we got:

57.9% of the audience believe team effort from government and citizens will help combat the virus. 10.5% agree that it will be good measures by health officials. 23.7% can bet that the virus will disappear as a result of fasting and prayers. Another 23.7% believe it will be because of our strong immunity. And yet again, another 23.7% believe it will be our hot weather. There is a whopping 5.3% who believe the country’s good luck and blessings will do it all. Finally, 2.6% are hopeful the virus will disappear on its own.

Few more weeks, and we’ll know who’s right for sure.

Classic symptoms of Coronavirus

We asked the audience to select amongst the following options, what the classic symptoms of COVID-19 are: Cough, Catarrh, Body pains, Bleeding, Fever, Convulsion, Sore throat, Itchy eyes, Rashes, and All of the above.

We found out that 73.7% of the audience are well aware of the classic symptoms of Coronavirus (cough, fever, sore throat, body pains, difficulty breathing). However, amongst them, some believe there are additional symptoms like itchy eyes, catarrh, bleeding, rashes and even convulsion.

Preventing the spread of the virus

And finally, we wanted to know to what extent our audience is aware of the measures they should take to flatten the curve in Nigeria. In the mix of proven measures, we also added the popular myths. The result below shows the percentage of people that believe the following measures:

Practice social distancing -100%
Avoid shaking hands -100%
Stay at home if you’re sick -100%
Wash your hands and use hand sanitizers -100%
Ban gatherings of all kind. Everyone should stay indoors -100%
Eat lots of garlic -87%
Eat lots of fruits and vegetables -87%
Gargle with saltwater -84%
Drink and bathe with hot water -80%
Believe, hope, and pray -52%

Recommendations

Nigerians need to be better educated and sensitized about the presence of the virus in the country, its dangers, and the measures to take to protect themselves and prevent further spread of the virus.

Every local media channel should be in the faces and ears of the people with top-of-the-mind awareness messages about the virus. These messages should provoke thoughts and not fear as that is the last thing we need right now.


You too can lend your voice and help us gather even more data. Here is the LINK to the survey. You can also set up your own survey for free using our solution. Click HERE to begin.

Remember to obey the laws of social distancing, stay safe, and follow only reliable news as reported by NCDC.

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