Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has slammed those not needing personnel protection equipment (PPE) using them when the health activists, nurses and physicians at the frontline need them.
Her remarks came while speaking with officials of 64 districts via a video conference that started at 10am from her official residence Ganabhaban on Tuesday (Mar 31).
“It’s (PPE) not something for you to wear at home,” she said adding that if everyone randomly wears it, there will be shortage for those needing it.
She added there is no need to use the by all except by who are entrusted with giving treatment to the people infected with coronavirus.
The prime minister urged the authorities concerned to create awareness about the use of PPE
Holidays likely to extend till Apr 9
Hasina said that the general holidays are likely to be extended till April 9 as part in a bid to contain the spread of the deadly coronavirus that has infected 51 in Bagladesh.
“We have earlier announced 10 days general holidays from March 26 (to April 4) and it might be extended till April 9,” she said.
She said that the holidays might be extended to prevent the Covid-19 from spreading as many people have already gone to their village homes as soon as the 10-day holiday was announced.
“We will have to take quarantine period into consideration so that this lethal virus can’t spread,” she said.
On Mar 23, the government declared a nationwide 10-day holidays from March 26 to April 4 shutting down all offices except essential and healthcare facilities.
Everyone has been requested to stay-at-home during the holidays unless they have a good reason to leave their homes to buy essentials such as food and for medical and health care purposes as the kitchen markets, food shops, pharmacies, hospitals and all emergency services remained out of the purview of the general holidays.
Ensure food aid for marginal people
The prime minister ordered the authorities concerned to prepare a list of people who are out of the social safety network programme.
“I am asking all including the deputy commissioners to work accordingly regarding the social safety net programme,” she said.
The premier added that beside the programme (social safety net), the food must reach daily wage earners, rickshaw pullers, transport workers lost jobs in the crisis and that they do not go hungry.
She, however, warned against irregularities in distributing food saying, “No corruption and irregularity in this regard will be tolerated anymore. We will not spare anyone, whoever he or she might be, involved in doing so to be rich or wealthy capitalizing the bad times of the people.”
Hasina also asked the authorities to ensure that none is left out of the list and distribute the food in a coordinated manner.
She also ordered ensuring additional allocation of foods to meet the growing demand and urged everyone, especially the affluent people to join hands with the government to this end.
Shun outdoor Pohela Boishakh celebrations
Hasina has called on everyone to shun outdoor gathering for Pohela Boishakh, asking them to celebrate the first day of the Bengali New Year, digitally.
“It is a matter of sorrow that we have to end the celebration this time due to coronavirus situation. We have banned it considering the welfare of the people,” she said.
“You can celebrate the Pahela Baishakh digitally as much as you want. But, the celebration by creating mass gatherings must be stopped (as mass gatherings have been banned considering the coronavirus situation),” she added.
She said that the government has suspended all the programmes of the “Mujib Year” marking the birth centenary of Father of the Nation Bangabandhu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman and the programmes of the Independence Day and the historic Mar 7 over the Covid-19 situation and scaled down the celebrations.