LILONGWE (MalawiTalk) – President Lazarus Chakwera has publicly admitted that he was part of the people that relaxed in the fight against Covid-19, says the country cannot continue to relax in the fight against the pandemic as lives are being lost.
Speaking in a radio address on Sunday the president has since called on the public to adhere to public health guidelines that were gazetted in the fight against Covid-19.
Chakwera has also called on the Ministry of Homeland Security and Ministry of Health to ensure that the public health guidelines are being enforced.
“I appeal to Malawians that if one gets signs of Covid-19, they should go into self-isolation and engage health personnel, saying doing so will also protect others,” he said.
The President, who is going into a 21 day fasting and prayer, says Malawians should also put their faith in God. He says people should intensify prayers for God to heal the country.
President took cognizance that the virus is spreading again, and it is taking lives again as just on Saturday, there were 12 deaths, bringing the total number since January 1 to over 30.
“We need to get our act together as a nation and take a stand against this enemy,” Chakwera said. “During the festive season over the last few weeks, many of us relaxed our vigilance against the virus, and now we are paying the price.
“We are paying the price because many of us are back to the old ways of not wearing masks. Many of us are back to the old ways of not maintaining our distance from others. Many of us are back to the old ways of not washing our hands regularly.”
Chakwera continued: “When I say many of us, I am including myself and all of us who are working in government. But our collective relaxation against the virus needs to end with immediate effect.
“We simply cannot afford to let this virus advance any further. We must stop it in its tracks and stop it from conducting yet another crusade of death in our midst.”
The gazetted public health guidelines include mandatory wearing of face masks in public places, restrictions in opening and closing of social joints to between 2pm and 8pm, and no consumption of beer within premises of drinking joints.
Other mandatory measures include placing of hand washing facilities and sanitisers in public places such as shops, offices, markets and churches, reduction by half in seating capacity of public transport vehicles, observing social distance in gatherings, burying of dead bodies within 24 hours and a ban on preparation of communal food during funerals and other gatherings.