By Duncan Mlanjira
Friday’s COVID-19 update indicates that Malawi has registered 523 new recoveries and no new related deaths while there were eleven new cases.
Co-chairperson of the presidential task force on COVID-19, Dr. John Phuka says the new data indicates that the proportion of those that have recovered has neared 90% of the total confirmed cased while the number of active cases is below the 500 mark.
“This is encouraging as it gives hope in this fight against COVID-19 pandemic,” Dr. Phuka said. “On the contrary, there is a general relaxation of preventive measures by the public due to low numbers of confirmed cases being reported on daily basis.”
Dr. Phuka says this taking note that there were few new cases being recorded in the past few weeks but are rising on a daily basis.
From the 11 new cases registered, eight of them are locally transmitted infections — seven from Lilongwe and one from Dowa.
The other three new cases are imported infections — refugees that have recently arrived at Dzaleka Refugee Camp in Dowa Health District.
Cumulatively, Malawi has recorded 5,885 cases including 183 deaths. Of these cases, 1,170 are imported infections and 4,715 are locally transmitted.
Cumulatively, 5,287 cases have now recovered bringing the total number of active cases to 415.
“It is important to note we are still losing productive citizens in our country due to COVID-19,” said the Doc. “Further note that local transmission is four times higher than the imported cases and that should draw our attention to stopping the community transmission.
“Therefore, despite the overall picture of positive trends, I would like to ask each one of us to do self-reflection as we are still recording new infections and deaths.
“This is critical as the full opening of schools and point of entries may carry the risk of spreading the disease and the fight of COVID-19 requires that everyone must be involved.
“We all need to strictly follow all the preventive measures wholesomely and we all need to treat everyone that you meet as a potential carrier of the virus.
“All those that been confirmed COVID-19 positive and all their contacts should strictly follow isolation and quarantine rules, respectively. Such collaborative efforts may stop further spread of the virus.”
Meanwhile, as the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic continues, MultiChoice Group (MCG) has reaffirmed its commitment to the United Nations’ efforts to conquer the virus that has wreaked havoc around the globe and will continue to support the global organisation’s ‘Pause’ campaign in celebration of UN Day on Saturday, October 24.
A statement from MCG says through its broadcast and digital platforms, MCG has been the official African media supporter of the Pause campaign since its launch in June 2020.
The campaign, which aims to reach one billion people by the end of December 2020, intends to prevent the spread of damaging misinformation about the pandemic and encourages people to only share trusted and accurate science-based social media content.
“As a pan-African organisation, we are proud to be able to reach a mass audience and use our reach into 19.5 million African households to raise awareness on key issues relevant to the continent,” says Calvo Mawela, MultiChoice Group’s chief executive officer.
“Supporting initiatives such as the Pause campaign, as well as airing relevant and compelling educational and news content on our platforms, aligns to our commitment to making an impact in the communities in which we operate.”
MCG continues its support in phase two, which rolled out from Wednesday, October 21 and as part of the second phase, students from the MultiChoice Talent Factory, the group’s development initiative that identifies and upskills Africa’s young storytellers, created a 60-second advert encouraging viewers to #PledgetoPause before they share online or digital content.
Throughout Wednesday, online influencers and global voices made their own #PledgetoPause and call on their supporters to do the same.
“With COVID-19, the wrong information can kill. It is increasingly clear that we cannot successfully tackle the pandemic without also addressing online misinformation,” the statement quotes Melissa Fleming, United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Global Communications.
“With the Pause campaign, we are trying to recreate a new social norm about how we share information. Each and every one of us can help break the chain of misinformation by pausing before we share. Pledge to Pause today.”
The consequences of the global pandemic have been vast and deep, and COVID-19 has again reminded the public of the need for urgent and determined action to achieve the world’s Sustainable Development Goals.
The UN has collaborated with Project Everyone — a not-for-profit agency — to develop a documentary which puts the power of communications behind these global developmental goals, to accelerate progress towards a world where, within the next decade, extreme poverty has been eradicated, climate change is properly addressed, and injustice and inequality are unacceptable.
As part of phase two, MCG will broadcast this thought-provoking internationally acclaimed documentary on its platforms.
“Through the transformative power of the media, and using our extensive platforms, we can envision the world we want to see in ten years’ time and enable the key conversations that will drive behaviour change to achieve those goals,” concludes Mawela.