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Kiir orders self-quarantine of new ministers returning from outside South Sudan over coronavirus

Newly appointed ministers take oath before President at the presidency on 16 March 2020 (SSPPU photo)
March 16, 2020 (JUBA) - South Sudan President Salva Kiir has directed newly appointed ministers and deputy ministers who returned from coronavirus affected countries to self-quarantine themselves.

Several opposition ministers were residing in neighbouring countries hit by coronavirus disease.

President Kiir Monday issued a statement on coronavirus or COVIS-19 pandemic which is now a global concern.

He asserted that the country is COVID-19 - free, but his government has to take the needed measures to scale up the response to detect, treat and reduce its transmission.

"I have ordered self-quarantine of all senior government officials who have just arrived from countries with established local infection and transmission of COVID-19".

He added that he directed security and law enforcement authorities to support the ministry of health to isolate, self-quarantine and removing suspected cases of coronavirus to isolation centres.

The announcement coincided with the swearing-in ceremony of the revitalized transitional government of national unity which took place on Monday at the South Sudanese presidency.

The self-quarantine, which lasts for two weeks, means to remains at home and avoid contact with others. The measure is observed by people who were in contact with a confirmed case to stop the spread of the respiratory disease.

The measure should be followed also by travellers from affected countries who arrive in South Sudan.

While self-isolation requires staying indoors and avoiding contact with others completely. It is done by people who have symptoms of coronavirus.

President Kiir also ordered to postpone international conferences and meetings that would take place in the country.

7- Non-essential travels to affected countries must be called off or postponed to a later date. We have ordered restrictions on the movement of people, including decline to issue new visas, revoking visas and residence permits, and denial of admission at ports of entry.

Furthermore, the president declared several preventive measures that people should implement daily like washing hands regularly and maintaining a Maintain at least one-metre distance from others.

However, he did not order to close schools and universities, a measure that countries declare when the pandemic is verified in the country.

(ST)