Kaieteur News – The coronavirus deaths continue to mount. Yet, the government is not doing anything to slow down its spread. Instead of implementing social restrictions, it is now set to further reopen the economy.
The people are also not taking sufficient precautions. Most schoolchildren are still at home and still a visit to the city would make you believe it is Christmas week. The streets are overflowing with traffic.
Social distancing is not only about keeping six feet apart. It is also about reducing the number of times you have contact with persons outside of your home circle. There are persons who are going to market to do shopping every day. There are persons who are window-shopping, looking around to see what is there to be purchased or to feast the eyes upon.
One would have thought that given the high number of coronavirus infections that Guyanese would have been more circumspect about going outdoors. The COVID-19 regulations encourage you to only go outside unless it is necessary. But it seems as if people are only staying at home if it necessary.
Within both the public and private sectors, there are persons who are at their places of work when they could be doing much of their work from home. In some cases, workers are not being allowed rotation even though, in the COVID-19 regulations, there is provision for work on rotation.
In a pandemic, you would expect persons to make their monthly grocery list and go on a single day and buy all that they would want for the month. However, people are still going two to three times a week to the markets and supermarkets. This is contributing to the lack of social distancing – the limiting of leaving one’s home.
Social gatherings are still taking place. One of the reasons why the coronavirus cases in the United States and Canada are so high is mainly because of social gatherings. Human indiscipline has led to a spike in cases in those countries.
The same is happening in Guyana. People are getting together and socializing both in homes and outside the homes. The COVID-19 Task Force has reported that it had to send 42 warning letters to businesses but there is likely to be much more. A few days ago, there were persons malingering outside of a beer garden; there may be hundreds of other cases like this.
People are not good at voluntary compliance. They either have to be given incentive or sanctions to act in a certain way. It therefore makes no sense calling on persons to stay at home and to only be outside of the home unless it is absolutely necessary. This does not work. This is why there are curfew and lockdowns and other social restrictions with fines for non-compliance.
While active cases are falling, they are falling much too slow. At the present rate, it will not be until May 2021 that we will be expected to be at the number of active cases that there existed in July, that is, under 50 cases per day. We are now more than 900 cases.
Old people are dying because younger persons are most likely taking the virus into their homes. The elderly are defenceless under such circumstances; however, younger persons are also dying. No one will say that a 53-year-old person or 29-year-old is elderly. Yet, two of the recent deaths were persons of these ages.
The time has come for some serious action. There is need for a two-week lockdown to curb the rise in cases. Non-essential businesses should be closed for the next two weeks. The curfew should be revised; no one should be allowed on the streets after 6 pm.
If the government goes ahead and increases the opening of the economy, further problems will result. Guyana only needs to look at what is happening around the world to realize that it is on a collision course with catastrophe.
The coronavirus needs a host to spread. The only way to stop it from spreading is through isolation via social distancing. But if people have to go to work every day, if persons are going about their business as normal, then the virus’ spread will not be stemmed.
The coronavirus does not have brakes. It is the people who have to slowdown. And more importantly, the government has to impose the sanctions to make them slowdown.
(The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this newspaper.)
Jan 25, 2021Selected grounds across Guyana to be converted to Leisure and Recreational Parks Despite the ongoing challenges being presented by covid-19, Minister of Culture Youth and Sport (MCYS) Charles Ramson...
Jan 25, 2021
Jan 25, 2021
Jan 24, 2021
Jan 24, 2021
Jan 24, 2021
Kaieteur News – Once again, I lament the horrible levels of mediocrity in Guyanese journalism. I do not believe you... more
Kaieteur News – A new era of broadcasting has emerged but will a new breed of broadcasters arise. There is now a multiplicity... more
Freedom of speech is our core value at Kaieteur News. If the letter/e-mail you sent was not published, and you believe that its contents were not libellous, let us know, please contact us by phone or email.
Feel free to send us your comments and/or criticisms.
Contact: 624-6456; 225-8452; 225-8458; 225-8463; 225-8465; 225-8473 or 225-8491.
Or by Email: [email protected] / [email protected]