Government eases Covid restrictions again
The Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19 has again eased some of the restriction measures meant to contain Covid-19, with the officials pointing out that as from Friday, the country’s Covid 19 situation was at Level One.
Taskforce co-chairperson Khumbize Kandodo Chiponda, who is also Minister of Health, said the number of people contracting the disease continues to dwindle.
“In the past month, the average number of new cases was no more than 10 a day. There are also sustained decreases in Covid-19 hospitalisations and deaths in all hospitals,” she said.
She stressed that the current trends in the progression of the pandemic have influenced the decision to ease the restrictions.
She said Malawi can now receive visitors from any country around the world as government has removed all the restrictions and that as part of the adjustment, Covid curfew hours will change, from 10 pm to 12 midnight.
This means businesses will now operate up to 12 midnight.
Health rights activist Maziko Matemba said since Covid-19 coverage is still low, people are encouraged to get vaccinated and companies and individuals can ask for Covid-19 vaccination services near public health care centres.
“All citizens are still reminded that Covid-19 is still a threat as we still have active cases in our communities so let’s continue masking, social distancing and hand washing,” he said.
Other adjustments in Covid restrictions include that number of people permitted to gather indoors goes up from 250 to 500 and number of people permitted to gather outdoors up from 500 to 2 000.
Chiponda said where the venue is too small to accommodate these numbers, then with appropriate social distancing, no more than 50 percent of the capacity of the venue may be used.
This includes religious services, political events and social gatherings.
Minibus and buses can carry passengers 100 percent capacity.
The wearing of masks in public places is still mandatory, and failure to wear a mask when required remains a criminal offence.
As of Thursday this week, Malawi had cumulatively recorded 61,648 Covid-19 cases, including 2,287 deaths.
However, 56,208 cases have recovered while 232 were lost to follow up. This meant that only 2,921 cases were active.