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Government acts on Covid-19

21 deaths Wednesday

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Gospel Kazako

Vice-President Saulos Chilima and a team of Cabinet ministers are, today, expected to meet members of the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 in Lilongwe to brief the latter on new recommendations on Covid-19 guidelines as the number of cases and deaths sours.

The Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 announced, in its brief Wednesday, that, within 24 hours, Malawi registered 21 new deaths, 591 new cases and 12 new recoveries.

The new figures bring the total number of the dead to 275 and that of active cases to 3,642. It also means that, within 48 hours, the country registered 40 deaths.

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“Today is another sad day for our country as we have recorded the highest numbers of confirmed cases, admissions and deaths within 24 hours at 591, 138 and 21, respectively. These are the highest numbers ever recorded in each of these categories in our country since the first Covid-19 cases were recorded on April 2 2020,” a statement which the Ministry of Health issued reads.

The taskforce is also expected to receive recommendations after the meeting of a team of technocrats from various ministries, who met on Tuesday, soon after President Lazarus Chakwera’s directive.

The government is expected to announce new guidelines— after deliberating on recommendations of the two groups—that will help stakeholders curb the spread of coronavirus.

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Following the death of two Cabinet ministers— Minister of Transport Sidik Mia and Local Government Minister Lingson Belekanyama— Chakwera addressed the nation where he, among other things, directed that Chilima lead a seven-member team of ministers to review the guidelines.

The ministers that met with Chilima yesterday included those of Health, Justice, Information, Education, Homeland Security, Civic Education and Local Government.

Minister of Information Gospel Kazako confirmed that the Vice President met with a team of Cabinet ministers tasked with the responsibility of reviewing Covid-19 guidelines.

Kazako added that members of the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 would make an announcement today on new guidelines based on recommendations that were made.

“Yesterday it was the presidential emergency committee, chaired by the Vice President [that met]; today, it’s the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19. So, whatever we have been discussing will be made available to the public today,” Kazako said.

Principal Secretary in the Ministry of Local Government represented the ministry following the death of Belekanyama on Tuesday.

Co-Chairperson of the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 John Phuka told The Daily Times that its members were also expecting to learn about recommendations from the technical team that also met following Chakwera’s directive.

“The technical team met and, today, they will give us the recommendations which we are going to give to the President,” Phuka said.

On Tuesday, Chakwera declared a state of national disaster in Malawi.

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