We are paying price for not wearing masks – Chakwera

President Lazarus Chakwera says the rapid spread in Coronavirus infections since Christmas is happening because people in the country relaxed their vigilance against the virus.

He made the remarks in a broadcast aired on Times Radio this morning. The national address comes as Malawi has registered over 1500 new cases since Christmas.

Chakwera said many people in the country, including himself, have stopped wearing masks, washing hand and observing the distance and now the country is paying the price.

He noted that there is now more than one strain of the virus and anyone can be infected hence it is important to not be complacent in the fight against the virus.

“Our collective relaxation against the virus needs to end with immediate effect. We simply cannot afford to let this virus advance any farther. We must stop it in its tracks and stop it from conducting yet another crusade of death in our midst,” said Chakwera.

He then urged people to wear masks, watch their distance, wash hands and observe guidelines set by authorities such as early closure of drinking places and restrictions in public gatherings.

The Malawi leader also directed the Ministry of Homeland Security to scale up the enforcement of Coronavirus guidelines.

On Saturday, Malawi registered a record high of 381 new COVID-19 cases and also a record high of 12 new deaths. Cumulatively, Malawi has recorded 8,306 cases including 220 deaths. Of these cases, 1,676 are imported infections and 6,630 are locally transmitted.

A total of 5,809 cases have now recovered while 80 cases are currently admitted.