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Activist wants Covid-19 preventive measures reviewed

Author: Garang Abraham | Published: Sunday, May 17, 2020

Edmund Yakani, CEPO executive director | Credit | Eye Radio

A civil society activist has appealed to the newly constituted coronavirus taskforce to review the public health restrictions that were eased by the presidency weeks ago.


Despite rising Covid-19 cases, the government eased some of its preventive measures that helped control the spread of the virus.

It permitted domestic and international travels, allowed businesses including bars, restaurants, boda boda, rickshaws, and others to reopen.

A total of 200 cases have been confirmed since the Presidency resolved to lift some of the coronavirus lockdown restrictions on Friday 8th of May, 2020.

The country which – as of last week -had no coronavirus deaths now has four fatalities.

Some officials in the Ministry of Health and medical doctors criticized the decision by the Executive to lift the restrictions.

However, during his SPLA Day commemoration speech, President Kiir said the taskforce which was chaired by him and deputized by Dr. Riek Machar will step back and allow medical professionals to take charge.

The new taskforce is now led by Hussein Abdel-bagi, Vice President in charge of the Service Cluster.

It is composed of the Minister of Health, a number of undersecretaries, and a member of Doctors’ Union, among others.

The Executive Director of the Community Empowerment for Progress Organization welcomed the appointment of the technical team.

Edmund Yakani told Eye Radio that the new team needs to reconsider the decision that allowed easing of some lockdown restrictions.

“We are asking them to review the eased restrictions that were done in the past by the previous taskforce specifically bars have been working and people gather at the bars,” Yakani said.

“Social distancing cannot be observed when people are confused and drunk in the bar. So, we are asking them to make sure they also commit themselves to ease restrictions slowly and professionally.”

South Sudan currently has 290 confirmed coronavirus cases, with 4 recoveries.

President Kiir on Saturday said although the lockdown measures were relaxed, the country may be forced by circumstances to re-impose those measures if advised by the medical team.

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