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Fight against spread of covid-19 : one more largesse from Biya

Dubbed the ‘special gift’ to all subdivisions, the Minister of territorial Administration itemized its content on Monday inYaounde

Atanga Nji Paul gave the details in a press statement while clarifying that the measure is not part of the National Solidarity Fund. President Biya created the fund as cases of the novel Coronavirus grew in Cameroon. The ‘parcels’ from the Head of State will be sent to all the 360 sub divisions; the smallest administrative unit in Cameroon. Hygiene and pharmaceutical products and protective gear make up the package that is estimated at 2 billion Francs CFA. The choice of gifts are to prevent the spread of the disease within communities. The World Health Organization, WHO, insists on the regular washing of hands using running water with soap as a sure way of preventing the spread of COVID-19 within the community. Biya is sending 4 million cubes of laundry soap, 75,000 buckets and 40,000 handwashing cans of 30-litres for the population. Although WHO does not advise on the obligatory wearing of masks by everyone, Cameroon authorities have made it compulsory. President Biya in this special package has offered one and a half million facemasks to his citizens. WHO has also recommended vast testing campaigns as a way to break the transmission chain because it enables contact tracing, when medics detect a case early. To make this possible, President Biya has offered rapid screening test kits. One of the worry as the pandemic flew into Cameroon was inadequate equipped hospitals especially in remote parts. Atanga Nji said in the statement that President Biya is offering “respiratory devices for hospitals,” across the country. Doctors, nurses and other personnel are on the frontline as the country fights the spread of the new Coronavirus. They need protection from contracting the virus as they continue to deliver healthcare to the sick. These “heroes of the pandemic” will receive 50,000 surgical masks from the President. The Minister of Territorial Administration gives “10 days” as the timeframe for the gifts from the Head of State to reach the regions. Heads of administrative units – governor, senior divisional officer and divisional officer will “oversee” the distribution, Atanga Nji said in the statement. He puts them on guard to make sure the gifts reach the “main beneficiaries, especially the vulnerable population”. Masks, laundry soap and buckets, for example, may look basic, but thousands of poor Cameroonians cannot afford them. It could explain the President’s decision.

Jude Vivan

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