NPP launching: Gambians raise concern as COVID-19 cases skyrocket

EYEAFRICA TV: Banjul, THE GAMBIA:- As President Adama Barrow’s National People’s  Party (NPP) launches its party, many Gambians took to social media to express their concern as the number of COVID-19 cases in the country is skyrocketing.

The Gambia has registered 71 new COVID-19 cases in the last two days alone, bringing the total number of active cases to 167. The total confirmed cases in the country is 4,090, while the death toll from virus stands at 128.

Many Gambians are worried that the party’s event at the Independence Stadium could be a super spreader for the coronavirus.

Amadou Scattred Janneh, a politician and one-time Jammeh’s information minister wrote on Facebook: “Seventy-one new Covid-19 cases registered in The Gambia, as President Adama Barrow defies his own government’s advice to hold a super spreader event at the Independence Stadium.”

To the President of the Gambia Bar Association, Salieu Taal holding public events at this point in time is reckless and irresponsible.

“71 new cases recorded in the latest sitrep. This is the highest number of cases ever recorded so far. It is really unconscionable, reckless and irresponsible to hold public events at this point in time. Where do we draw the line!”

A veteran journalist, Sang Mendy asked: “How many more cases will be recorded after the Super Spreading event organized by National People’s Party (NPP) launch today?”

“If you want to know how a political party will behave when in power, check their actions, behaviours and how they react to issue of national interest when vying for office.”

The CEO of Farm Fresh, Modou NSZ Njie believe that “Our government and the public need to act responsibly. 71 new cases is quite alarming. All public gatherings should have been/should be banned. A word to the wise is enough.”

Another former information minister, Demba A. Jawo wrote: “Sometimes it looks as if President Adama Barrow either does not listen to his advisers or they are too incompetent to give him the correct advice. We are all witnesses to an obvious surge in coronavirus cases and according to predictions; the pandemic is likely to increase drastically before it begins to slow down.”

“Whatever the case however, we seem to be treading on dangerous ground, which can lead to catastrophic consequences for our fragile healthcare system,” he added.

A concern Gambian, Kejau Touray said: “Ban all gatherings right now as cases are getting to an all time high. Cases are rapidly increasing and was less than 10 last week.”

Earlier on Friday, the Association of Resident Doctors (GARD) in The Gambia described the failure to comply with the existing COVID-19 regulations as “disappointing and displeasing”.

“It is with great disappointment and displeasure we notice the ongoing concerts, political rallies/launching of party, weddings, naming ceremonies, etc. being performed or planned at different venues,” the body said in a press release.

“People refusing to be quarantined or isolated/escaping from treatment centres despite being confirmed positive with the virus and further mingling with family members and the rest of the community.

“We have already stopped wearing masks, socially distancing and regular washing of hands, showing how we have quickly forgotten our loved ones lost to this pandemic, including 3 Health care workers.”

NPP is due to launch its party today at the Independence Stadium, an event expected to attract at least 100,000 people.

However, event organizers said they have advised their supporters to wear masks and observe social distancing. But to many, this will not be possible as seen in the President’s recent Meet the People’s Tour.

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