Mbabane: Apparently, the opening of Eswatini economy will derail government’s efforts of containing the spread of the deadly coronavirus.
Even government, through the Minister of Health Lizzie Nkosi seem to have conceded that. This stems from Nkosi’s statement which says positive cases of COVID-19 are expected to increase as the country will be opening more businesses from June 15. One of those businesses is the manufacturing, distribution and selling of alcohol.
Nkosi highlighted that the sharp increase in the newly recorded cases did not come as a surprise and the numbers are still expected to grow even more, the main reason being the easing of the partial lockdown and opening of more businesses.
The minister pointed to the fact that the new cases are as a result of the increase in the movement of people and contact with each other more rapidly.
In Nkosi’s view, to most people, the easing of the lockdown means they should stop protecting themselves by observing and adhering to the health precautions given by the ministry of health and World Health Organization (WHO).
On May 29, Prime Minster Ambrose Mandvulo Dlamini announced opening of some businesses to allow the economy to breath and since those businesses started operating an increase in new cases has been quite higher. For the past five days, 77 new cases have been recorded. On Wednesday, 27 new cases were recorded out of the 160 who were tested, of which 133 came negative.
Of the 27 new cases, 19 were from Manzini region and the eight from Lubombo and Hhohho regions respectively. Manzini still remains the epicenter of the pandemic as 247 cases were recorded from the region, followed by Hhohho region with 90 cases, 35 from Lubombo and last but not least Shiselweni has recorded 26 cases.
The minister disclosed went on to tell Independent News that the decline in the recoveries is engulfed by the increase in the new cases as health workers are overwhelmed by the burden of focusing on the new cases other than monitoring those who are ready to be cleared of COVID-19.
She said health workers are currently focusing on contact tracing for the new cases, adding that once they find time, they will be able to settle for clearing patients who have recovered.
The total number of recoveries is currently standing at 236 as four new recoveries were recorded on Wednesday, while 50 patients are reportedly to be admitted at the hospital and 82 are being treated from home.