SADC calls for unity in the wake of COVID-19

By ZBC Reporter
SADC has urged member states to cooperate and move in unity in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic which has affected over 271,000 people worldwide
The virus has spread to at least 164 countries and territories. The World Health Organization declared the outbreak a pandemic.
The call was made this Monday, in a statement on commemorations of Southern Africa Liberation Day which is celebrated annually on the 23rd of March by the SADC bloc.
SADC Executive Secretary, Her Excellency Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax emphasised that as member states celebrate this day paying tribute to the men and women who sacrificed their lives a for the liberation of the SADC region it is of great importance to adhere to measures which have been enacted by the respective governments as a way to curb the spread of the global pandemic.
“This year’s commemorations of the Southern Africa Liberation Day is coming at a time when the world at large, and all of us, are grappling with COVID-19, which has been declared by the World Health Organisation as a global pandemic and public health emergency.
“I appeal to everyone to adhere to all measures being put in place by our governments to avoid or minimise the spread of the virus. We shall not fail, let us cooperate and move in Unity, everyone must play their part, a paradigm shift in the way we conduct ourselves and our business is a must, said Tax.
Africa’s confirmed cases are currently low – around 640.
In Africa, 16 people have died from Covid-19, the respiratory illness caused by coronavirus: six in Egypt, six in Algeria, two in Morocco, one in Sudan and one in Burkina Faso.
Zimbabwe has recorded two cases, and as part of measures against the virus, President Emmerson Mnangagwa has declared a state of National disaster, imposed travel restrictions, postponed Zimbabwe International Trade Fair (ZITF), all independence celebrations, and banned public gatherings of more than 100 people for 60 days, including church services, weddings and all international sporting fixtures.
In South Africa, which has 116 cases, President Cyril Ramaphosa has declared a state of disaster, restricting travel, closing schools, banning mass gatherings and ordering bars to close or limit numbers to 50.
The country has also banned all cruise ships from its ports. Anyone breaking South Africa’s coronavirus measures will be subject to a fine, or even imprisonment.
Other African nations have been imposing similar restrictions:
More than 14,500 people have died from COVID-19 globally. An estimated 98,000 of the 336,000 people who have been diagnosed with the disease across the world have recovered, according to data collected by Johns Hopkins University.