After President Lazarus Chakwera on Tuesday proclaimed a state of national disaster and directed that the country’s second-in-command Saulos Chilima leads a ministerial task-team to review Covid-19 guidelines in order to respond effectively to the pandemic, the vice-president hit the ground on Wednesday by chairing a first meeting with the Ministers in Lilongwe to work on coherent strategy.
Present at the meeting at the Bingu international Conference Centre (BICC) auditorium, were the Ministers for Health, Homeland Security, Education, Civic Education, Local Government, Justice and Information.
The ministerial special team that the Vice President is leading is expected to review and recommend the new guidelines to Presidential Task Force for implementation in a bid to effectively respond to the pandemic that has killed over 10 people this year alone including Local Government Minister Lingson Belekanyama and Transport and Public Works Minister Mohamed Sidik Mia .
During a national address on Tuesday, President Chakwera directed that the ministries of Health, Homeland Security, Education, Civic Education, Local Government, Justice and Information to work together with the Office of the Vice President to review Covid-19 guidelines and recommend any amendments to be made to the guidelines.
Chakwera hinted that he was prepared to take the extraordinary step of declaring a State of Emergency subject to approval by the Defence and Security Committee of Parliament when he would direct the military to impose a curfew.
Meanwhile, Chilima has bemoaned the death of his two Tonse Alliance Cabinet colleagues, saying “the country has lost great leaders”.
Other prominent personalities who have succumbed to Covid-19 include Traditional Authority Njolomole of Ntcheu, veteran broadcaster Maria Chidzanja Nkhoma, Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Information Ernest Kantchentche, two Mzuzu university professors and other leaders over the past two weeks.
Malawi is currently observing three days of national mourning and Chakwera ordered that national flags fly at half-staff.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :