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Covid-19 taskforce slammed for ‘unenforced’ directives

Author: Priscah Akol | Published: Thursday, April 30, 2020

The previous taskforce was headed by President Kiir and deputized by Dr. Riek Machar. Photo| Lin Nelson | Eye Radio.

A political analyst has criticized the High-Level Taskforce on COVID-19 for issuing directives that are not implemented, saying their violations contributed to the recent upsurge in coronavirus cases.

On Tuesday, a record 28 new cases were confirmed in Juba.

Established last month, the team comprises mostly of politicians, including President Salva Kiir, First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar, national security chief, central bank governor and the minister of cabinet affairs.

According to Dr. James Okuk, the taskforce is full of politicians who are not technical, which makes the operationalization and policy development weak and non-effective in both urban and rural areas.

Dr. Okuk also criticized the government for imposing restrictions despite the economic hardships facing the common citizens.

“These leaders have been handling the management of COVID-19 at a high political level without proper technical backing on the ground,” he said.

“That’s why their announcements and the declarations evaporate in the hotels and people continue to do their normal businesses without real connection with the high-level task force.”

Dr. Okuk further blamed the taskforce for allowing confirmed positive cases to mingle with the public, infecting more people in the process.

“Just in one day, we are overwhelmed with 28 cases from one person, and the mess came from the task force, they were one who allowed the person to go and mingle more people instead of the case to be confined and controlled in Juba.”

Dr. Okuk expressed fear that due to inadequate response by the task force, the virus might have spread to many countrysides.

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