Mbabane: Eswatini government has extended the National Emergency by a further month, effective Tuesday May 19, 2020.
It is exactly two months since the country went into lockdown to fight or curb the deadly coronavirus but the severity and fluidity of virus has seen a surge of infections across the globe and the country. Over four million across the globe have contacted the virus; by morning on Friday May 15, 187 cases were confirmed in the country.
Announcing the news developments, Prime Minister Ambrose Mandvulo Dlamini in a press conference held at the cabinet offices, said “looking at the current scenario, it has pleased His Majesty’s government to invoke section 29 of the Disaster Management Act of 2016 to extend the national emergency by one month with effect from Tuesday May 19, 2020.
The extension of the national emergency means that all the COVID-19 regulations already in place continue to be in force.
The premier emphasized that the COVID-19 regulations remain in force and all emaSwati are expected to fully adhere to the partial lockdown measures.
“Government will continue to intensify screening and detection and testing mechanisms as a measure strategy of containing the spread of the virus”
In opening the economy the premier said the country has not yet reached a stage of opening up the economy, hence the COVID-19 regulations remain in full force.
He added that the country cannot be complacent or look back to open up again as that might put the country at risk of losing all the gains that it has made so far.
The premier said continuing in this manner was aimed at strengthening all the mechanisms of taking new landscapes of COVID-19 to protect emaSwati from a disease which continues to rage havoc across the world.
“This is without doubt an unprecedented time in our history as a nation as a nation and one of the biggest challenges we have had to face a challenge that called for a united front from all of us to outsmart and eventually conquer the disease while protecting the lives of emaSwati”, he said.
The Prime Minister has also announced a deferral of a Cabinet decision allowing an increase in the number of people allowed to gather at Churches & places of worship. “This decision has since been deferred pending ongoing consultations with relevant structures.”
“Churches & all gatherings continue to be limited to a maximum of 20 people strictly observing COVID-19 regulations & health precautions.
He further reminded the public about the importance of following prevention measures to mitigate the spread of the virus.
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