President Peter Mutharika on Friday announced a a State of Disaster even before the country confirmed its first coronavirus case but now the nation will likely enter stricter lockdown as soon as possible to prevent coronavirus from being transmitted into Malawi as lockdowns have begun across Africa continent with rising cases above 1 000.
Mutharika has banned public gatherings and ordered closure of schools, saying ew measures to come into force on Monday, March 23, include a restriction of public gatherings of more than 100 people and closure of all schools, colleges and universities.
These restrictions apply to all gatherings including weddings, funerals, church, congregations, rallies, government meetings.
He emphasised that the national security apparatus has been ordered into action to enforce the restrictions.
As lockdowns have begun across Africa and with the State of Disaster in the country, Malawi now faces the possibility of ‘lockdown’.
The definition of lockdown means a state of isolation or restricted access instituted as a security measure, or according to the Cambridge Dictionary, a situation in which people are not allowed to enter or leave a building or area freely because of an emergency.
Just across the boarder, Zimbabwe has confirmed its first case of the coronavirus as the pandemic reaches a health system that has nearly collapsed amid an economic crisis.
Africa’s busiest airport, in Johannesburg, blocked foreigners from disembarking and two major airlines – Ethiopian Airlines and South African Airways – announced sweeping cancellations of international flights.
Nigeria announced it is closing airports to all incoming international flights for one month in the continent’s most populous country.
Rwanda said all unnecessary movements outside the home are banned for two weeks as of midnight except for essential services such as healthcare and shopping.
The East African nation, which has 17 cases, has told all public and private employees to work from home. Tunisia imposed its own lockdown earlier.Eritrea and Angola announced their first cases, meaning 41 of Africa’s 54 countries are now affected.
Congo reported its first death, while Burkina Faso reported two new ones.
Uganda is closing its borders to all but cargo.
Ethiopia said all arriving passengers will face mandatory quarantine as of Monday.
Africa now has more than 1,100 cases, the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention said.
The coronavirus was first reported in the city of Wuhan in China on 31 December 2019. Within the past three months the virus has spread at a fast rate in Europe, Canada, the United States and Africa. Some of the affected African countries are within Malawi’s proximity such as South Africa.
- Fever, Cough. Sore throat,
- Difficulty breathing
- That black people are immune
- That warm climate is protective
- Washing hands frequently with soap & water
- Stop handshakes
- Cover mouth & nose when coughing