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OPINION: COVID-19: World health calamity

Mar 26, 2020, 2:55 PM | Article By: DM Badjie

The Coronavirus pandemic is the new health scare confronting the world, with no cure found yet despite the technological era the world is endowed with in recent times.

The world continues to wonder as to the cause of this virus. Some pundits have argued that it emanated from the eating habits of the Chinese. Others have argued that it might have been a biological weapon created for some intended purposes. Whatever the case, Allah knows best.

The Coronavirus is spreading worldwide at alarming proportions. We have seen countries taking measures to protect their citizens and environment. This is of high social, economic, trade and business costs. The death tolls associated with COVID-19 worldwide constitute global crisis, and all nations are at a tipping point in this outbreak.

In the fight against the spread of the virus, lockdowns in respect of cities, schools, social services, workplaces, in addition to border closures and travel restrictions have become the order of the day.

South Africa declared a state of disaster over Coronavirus and closed her borders. New Jersey Governor (USA) announced state-wide curfew for all residents and businesses. Countries such as Ghana, Rwanda, France, USA, Saudi Arabia, Japan and many others have taken measures to curb the spread of Coronavirus.

The world economy, especially those of the big powers may be sliding into recession. This will have significant impact on poor and developing economies around the world. This is a very serious and deadly virus that cannot be taken for granted. It is expected therefore, that The Gambia government will make an official announcement on its response to the COVID-19 outbreak. It is advisable for the government to call for national prayers on Friday and Sunday for Allah to keep The Gambia safe from the Coronavirus and to ask for Allah’s mercy on the world.

A more effective measure would be for The Gambia to either close her borders or restrict visitors from Europe and Asia. In this regard, economic consideration cannot take priority over the health of the people of this country.

As government makes efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19, the donor community and friendly countries like China, Turkey, and Saudi Arabia among others should consider assisting The Gambia with a well-equipped laboratory centre to conduct effective monitoring and control of the virus. This is an emergency situation for which international corporation is needed.

The address by the President on the Coronavirus is a welcome news. However, continuous public awareness drive in all local languages will enhance better healthcare on the part of the public.