By Malifu Bedrin, MANA:
Nkhata Bay District has maintained zero COVID -19 cases status for over four weeks, a development that has pleased authorities.
Reports from the district’s health office (DHO) indicate that from late February up to date there are no any COVID -19 cases registered in the district.
In an interview, District Medical Officer, Joel Mtonga attributed the status to active case finding techniques, robust contact tracing and testing and isolation compliance.
He, however, bemoaned that people have relaxed on adherence to preventive measures.
“Through observation, the mask policy outdoor is poorly followed except in government offices and banks. In general, most people have relaxed on strict adherence to preventive measures,” he said.
“If we stay vigilant to preventive measures, we might continue to record zero case and prevent the district from another possible wave,” he added.
Mtonga, therefore, appealed to people from the district to continue following preventive measures and seeking medical attention whenever they fall sick because COVID-19 is not over.
A large number of people in the district show recklessness in following COVID-19 precautions such as wearing of face masks as they used to during the onset of the second wave.
Other measures such as hand washing at shops and public places have become optional.
Nkhata Bay Police Public Relations Officer, Kondwani James, said it is true some people from the district are not following the gazzetted COVID-19 preventive measures and as law enforcers, they are doing their best by arresting those who are found defying the measures.
“We really observed that although the Coronavirus pandemic isn’t yet over, statistics of people who are putting on masks is decreasing and as law enforcers we are not tolerating the behaviour,” said James.
He added that for the past three days, they have managed to arrest and fine more than five people for not following COVID-19 preventive measures.
The district has so far registered 642 COVID-19 cases and twelve deaths.