SADC express solidarity with China over coronavirus

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Timo Shihepo

Windhoek - The Southern African Development Community (SADC) has expressed its solidarity with China over the deadly coronavirus that left over 1000 people dead.

China and the world at large is still reeling from the lethal coronavirus, which has infected over 45 000 people, globally. The virus has disrupted the movement of people and goods as many countries have opted not to issue visas for citizens to travel to or from China.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) has called on for international cooperation. SADC, through its Secretariat, appeared to answer WHO’s call after it presented a letter of solidarity with the people and government of China.

The letter was presented on Monday to Dr Zhao Yanbo, the Chinese Ambassador to Botswana, by Jorge Cardoso, the Director of the Organ on Politics, Defence and Security Co-operation, at the SADC Secretariat on behalf of Dr Stergomena Tax, the SADC Executive Secretary.

The letter of solidarity expressed compassion to the families of those who lost their lives to the disease, and extended the goodwill to those who are still afflicted with this infirmity, as well as the people who are providing the care and support.

It commended the Chinese government for the swift measures taken to contain the virus, and the continued efforts at the frontline of detecting, managing and preventing the spread of the virus.

Dr Zhao indicated that current statistics on the new cases were on the decline, showing an encouraging positive sign that the outbreak is on the verge of containment.

 “In the endeavour to mitigate and prevent the spread of coronavirus, the Chinese government has demonstrated extensive capacity in her public health sector, having learnt significantly from past experiences on the outbreaks, such as H1N1 and SARS pandemics in 2003, which were some of the worst health crises in recent Chinese history. Consequently, the Chinese government has developed resilient public health system to contain the disease,” he said.

He added that over 9,000 health professionals have been deployed in Hubei province to help contain and manage the pandemic.

“I express my gratitude to the international community, including SADC member states and the African Union, for the support and solidarity given to his country following the outbreak of the scourge,” he said.

 

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