Masks4All Malawi advocates for wearing of masks at upcoming Tonse Alliance inauguration

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By John Namalenga Jnr

The upcoming inauguration ceremony of the new President Lazarus Chakwera and Saulos Chilima are expected to be free from Covid-19 spread as a local Nongovernmental Organization Masks4All Malawi has donated 102,000 face masks to organizers of the event.

The event which is scheduled to take place on Independence Day, July 6, will be held at the 41,100 seater Bingu National Stadium (BNS) located in Lilongwe.

The masks according to Head of Partnerships and Communications, Zilanie Gondwe, have been provided as part of their mission of making sure the entire population has at least a mask.

“Masks are needed to protect, fight and minimize the spread of Covid-19 and for a very young nation like Malawi that does not have well equipped healthcare systems, preventing the pandemic is essential.

“We have donated the masks to UTM for the inauguration for the organizers to distribute as they seem fit to people who will be attending,” indicated Gondwe.

She also adds that it is extremely important that masks are washed before wearing them on the inauguration day at BNS.

Commenting on his part, Virologist for Masks4All Malawi, Gama Bandawe, who is also Head of Biological Sciences Department at Malawi University of Science and Technology (MUST), Gama Bandawe, emphasizes that the current rate of transmission of the pandemic must be treated with the seriousness it deserves.

“We should be very concerned about the rate of local transmission as we have now transitioned from a state where the majority of infections that we were seeing were imported cases to where cumulatively the total number of cases through local transmission is surpassing imported case,” Warns Bandawe.

An update from the ministry of health on Tuesday night showed that in the past 24 hours, Malawi registered 41 new Covid-19 cases, no new recoveries and 2 new deaths. On the new cases, 30 are contacts to confirmed local cases and cumulatively, Malawi has recorded 1265 cases including 16 deaths.

Bandawe points out that at the moment, we have an uncontrolled local epidemic and we have just gone through a period where we had day after day events that brought hundreds of people together.

As the inauguration ceremony by the Tonse Alliance is also expected to bring together thousands of people, the organization hopes masks for every attendee will help a lot.

The masks were received by Luke Mkandawire on behalf of the organizing committee for the event at UTM offices.


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