National COVID-19 Task Force concerned about cavalier attitude of some citizens in response to public advisories

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Prime Minister Moses Nagamootoo, Chairman of the National COVID-19 Task Force (NCTF) today hosted multiple virtual planning meetings to continue the coordination of the work of the Task Force as Guyana intensifies efforts to combat the spread of COVID-19. Consistent with public advisories, the NCTF has incrementally transitioned from in person meetings to virtual meetings which it is now fully utilizing.

Yesterday, Tuesday, March 24, the NCTF updated His Excellency President David Granger and Ministers of Government on the work of the NCTF and several measures were proposed and discussed. A menu of fiscal measures was approved and the Minister of Finance Hon. Winston Jordan and the Guyana Revenue Authority have been tasked with making the requisite public announcements.

The NCTF continues to monitor the situation and will recommend and take further measures as are advisable and appropriate.

The National COVID-19 Task Force thanks the many Guyanese who have heeded the public advisories to adjust social behavior in combatting the spread of COVID-19.

The NCTF is however seriously concerned that too many citizens and businesses have been ignoring the public advisories and warnings and have been going about their daily activities as per normal and operating in a business-as-usual manner. The NCTF warns that such a cavalier approach by some citizens can seriously impair the efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 and have a devastating impact on the Guyanese populace.

As such the NCTF is both monitoring the conduct of the citizenry and considering various measures, including extreme measures, which have been instituted in other countries, to impose restrictions on the movement of persons for a defined period until the threat is abated.

Prime Minister Nagamootoo also commended Minister of Public Health Hon. Volda Lawrence and the Health Emergency Operations Centre (HEOC) for the work they have done to date in containing the spread of COVID-19 and also in screening, testing, quarantining and isolating persons who are suspected to have contracted COVID-19 and persons who have contracted the virus.

The total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Guyana remains 5, inclusive of one death. The other four persons are in isolation.