COVID-19 : Total disregard for safety measures triggers a spiral of new cases

New infections of the COVID-19 pandemic in Cameroon have rapidly increased to over 5000, shortly after the government eased restrictions on bars and other small scale businesses.

In just one week, Cameroon recorded over 1600 new cases, with 524 cases recorded within 24 hours.

New cases in one week

The recent trend has seen not less than 100 cases recorded daily as seen bellow:

20/05/2020 – #204
21/05/2020 – #528
22/05/2020 – #112
23/05/2020 -#197
24/05/2020 -#154
25/05/2020 -#154
26/06/2020 -#318

 

As the situation persists, the Minister of Public Health, Dr. Manaouda Malachie recently warned that Cameroon was getting into a complicated phase of the pandemic.

Dr. Manaouda said pride of place must be given to the personal protection and that of family members.

But not everyone is heeding the call. Many still go about their daily routine without masks .

Why are new cases dramatically rising?

On Thursday April 30, 2020, the Prime Minister and Head of government, Dr. Joseph Dion Ngute, announced that restrictions on bars and other leisure centres had been  lifted.

He clearly explained that the government decision was to ensure that small scale businesses most of which were at the verge of a collapse, should continue functioning .

But that same evening , impromptu parties and wild celebrations were witnessed in bars across the country.

It was clear, that many had misunderstood the decision. Some said COVID-19 was a farce, and life could go on as before.

Many people, some who had hitherto said they had no money to buy masks suddenly had money to drink themselves to stupor. Some reportedly spent the night in beer palors.

Bar owners celebrated the opportunity to make money again, alongside a-three-month exemption from taxes.

‘Everyone must know this disease is real’

In the wake of this delicate phase, Dr. Mama Lucien, Head of the Cité Verte Health District is calling on all Cameroonians to be responsible .

Dr. Lucien Mama, Head of the Cité Verte health district

He says the only way to reverse the trend is for Cameroonians to religiously adhere to all safety measures. 

Enforcing stringent measures

A faction of the nationals are rather of the opinion that enforcing stringent measures , especially shutting down bars will stem the spread of the virus.

Nganjeu Majolie Sylvie, a business woman, is partisan to the implementation of such stringent measures.

Nganjeu Majoli, Yaounde-based business woman

” The spread of this disease can only be reduced if everyone wears their masks. To constrain people to wear masks, those who are caught without masks should pay a huge fine.The government should close bars for at least one month”.

 

Kathy Neba Sina

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