Deputy Speaker Madalitso Kazombo, who is also Kasungu East MP, has said he was disheartened to see angry residents of Wimbe Trading Centre in Kasungu district on Friday snatching a body of Covid-19 victim from the health officials to burry themselves.
Kazombo was rebuffed even after he literally lay prostrate in trying to persuade the people that they leave the burial of butcher James Banda to the health personnel who had personal protective equipment (PPE) needed in handling bodies of people who succumb to the highly-infectious Covid-19 disease.
The deceased tested positive for Covid-19 at Kamuzu Central Hospital (KCH) in Lilongwe on Friday after he was referred there from Kasungu.
Kazombo said he was disheartened to see adamant sympathisers breaking open the casket, which he had bought, and conducting the body-viewing ceremony.“This was despite my lying prostrate and trying to plead with the people to let the hospital personnel to handle the burial,” he added.
Kazombo said he is helping to arrange for Covid-19 tests for family members of the deceased and those who contacted his body.
Kasungu district health officer Emmanuel Golombe is concerned that most of the community members went on to open the plastic wrappers and the sealed coffin and allowed people to view the body before the burial.
“Our fear now is that many people were exposed,” he said.
Golombe said they will engage the district leadership, including chiefs and other key stakeholders, to give more effective civic education on the matter.