Dilip Kadiwar (left) and Kaushik Patel donate the PPEs to Kanjunjunju
* Patel Samaj is a grouping of the Patel lineage community originally from Gujarat state of India
By Duncan Mlanjira
While emphasis on the fight against COVID-19 pandemic is on providing medical equipment for treatment units, Patel Samaj of Malawi has come in with a difference by donating essential personal protective equipment (PPEs) to Blantyre City Council’s burial team.
Patel Samaj is a grouping of the Patel lineage community whose clan of members are originally from Gujarat state of India and previously have assisted hospitals, health centers, orphanages and NGOs in various ways.
Presenting the donation, one the the grouping’s directors Dilip Kadiwar said they decided to assist the Council’s burial team as they play an important role following the exponential COVID-19 related deaths in this second wave of the pandemic.
They have provided gloves, coveralls, gumboots, surgical masks as well as digging equipment.
“Blantyre City Council raised an alarm to the community that there was need to protect their burial team as they continue serving the public in these trying times,” Kadiwar said.
Receiving the items, the City Council’s director of health and social services, Dr. Emmanuel Kanjunjunju applauded the Patel Samaj for the assistance and took cognizance that the grouping has always supported the Council and city at large.
Also present was another director, Kaushik Patel, who disclosed that the first Patels settled in Malawi from Gujarat state of India in the late 1800s to early 1900s.
“Since then the Patel community members have undertaken in various sectors of the country’s economy from various businesses to engineering, medicine, politics and other areas.
“As the Patel Samaj of Malawi, we have always ensured to stand in support of our fellow Malawians. Even prior to the pandemic, Patel Samaj has been reinforcing Blantyre City Council’s efforts to improve the initiatives undertaken as part of our social partnership to the community.”
“This is in line with one of the objectives to support social needs and we cherish the partnership we have with Blantyre City Council,” he said.
Its leadership is composed of a Board of Directors and currently the chairperson is Vinu Patel.
The COVID-19 situation report as of Thursday evening, the country registered 227 new COVID-19 cases, 296 new recoveries and 14 new deaths.
All new cases are locally transmitted with Blantyre having the highest at 128 followed by 20 from Mzimba North and 11 from Lilongwe.
From the 14 new COVID-19 related deaths seven were from Blantyre, three from Lilongwe, one each from Chitipa, Dedza, Kasungu and Chiradzulu Districts.
There were 31 cases that were hospitalised while 20 were discharged. Currently, a total of 199 active cases are hospitalised with Blantyre having the highest at 59 followed by 47 in Lilongwe, 20 in Mzimba North and 12 in Zomba.
Cumulatively, 12,879 cases have now recovered, 134 were lost to follow-up, and 76 are still being investigated to ascertain their outcome — bringing the total number of active cases to 14,267.
Cumulatively, Malawi has recorded 28,270 cases including 914 deaths (case fatality rate at 3.2%).
The positive cases out of the total translates to a positivity rate of 13.3%.