Society wary of mega rallies amid rising Covid-19 positivity rates

The Society of Medical Doctors (SMD) has expressed dismay with the decision Malawi’s major political parties have taken to organize and conduct mega rallies amidst rising positivity rates in Covid-19 cases.

Over the last weekend alone, Malawi registered 235 new Covid-19, prompting the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 to review the preventive guidelines.

Minister Kandodo Chiponda

A member of the taskforce and Minister of Health and Population, Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda, who addressed the media on Monday in Lilongwe, disclosed that Omicron variant had been detected in Malawi.

Before detection of Covid-19 Omicron variant in Malawi, there had been zero to single digits of Covid-19 caused deaths, hospitalisations and new registered cases of the pandemic.

“I urge Malawians to continue observing all preventive measures against the pandemic,” implored Chiponda.

But her advice seems to have fallen on deaf ears of senior members of the Malawi Congress Party (MCP), Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and United Democratic Front (UDF), who are trying to outclass each other before on who organizes the biggest and best mega rally.

Barely three days after MCP conducted its mega rallies in Lilongwe, the DPP/UDF coalition has announced that it will hold its own at Njamba Freedom Park in Blantyre on Sunday.

Dr Victor Mithi: Shocked

DPP Regional Governor for the South, Charles Mchacha, told Nyasa Times that the party held a meeting with all parliamentarians from Malawi’s Southern region on Monday where they agreed on holding the rally.

“The rally is aimed to give hope to Malawians who he said are facing economic challenges out of other things to be tackled,” said Mchacha.

He claimed that they have put in place strict measures which people are expected to follow when coming to the rally.

“We will put hand-washing basins in strategic places, hand out masks to all people who will come without wearing one. We are also discussing inviting health authorities to come and give Covid-19 vaccines to those who would have not received the jab and willing to do so,” said Mchacha.

However, this has shocked SMD President Dr. Victor Mithi who described Covid-19 as a thorn in clinical fresh.

“As we approach the festive season and towards January, 2022, our hospitals will be overwhelmed and our health workers will be consumed assuming that we continue doing business as usual as people are not coming to get vaccinated late alone following the pandemic’s preventive measures,” said Mithi.

The Media Institute of Southern Africa (Misa) Malawi chapter on Tuesday organised a virtual press conference in which it sought to address misinformation around the new Covid-19 Omicron variant.

At least two people have died of Covid-19 since the new variant was detected in Malawi on 14th December, 2021.

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