Namibia’s Covid-19 gains no cause for comfort

WHILE Namibia’s anti-Covid-19 gains ought to be revered as a global model on how an, underdeveloped country managed to contain the spread of the deadly virus, we cannot afford to rest on our laurels.

Ranked 130 in terms of the UNDP human development indicators, Namibia has managed to contain the virus with only 16 cases reported since the outbreak in February, while the first world countries such as the United States have 1.56 million confirmed cases and 92 000 deaths while the United Kingdom have 249 000 confirmed cases and 35 000 deaths.

Namibia has not reported a single death but has recorded 14 recoveries from the 16 reported cases, which is a remarkable achievements from President Hage Geingob’s administration.

Without over glorifying the State, we have to admit that government’s strategy of combating the pandemic was clear and unequivocal from the onset.

This strategy has also been backed by extraordinary action by President Hage Geingob who seized the urgency of the moment and wasted no time in imposing tough restrictive steps and galvanising crucial support from the private sector.

It remains inspiring, last Thursday the government announced a five-year ban on buying new cars for senior politicians and government officials with the funds channelled to help us fund fight on Covid-19.

Again, as inspiring as our national Covid-19 response story can be today, it is not a cause for complacency. As a publication and we also believe at national level, no one can at this stage, state that the spread of Covid-19 has been curtailed fully in view of the nature and gravity of the disease, the prevailing global and regional realties and trends, as well as the substantial proportion of asymptomatic cases that may exist at any point in time.

What we can confidently state is that, apart from swift government effort, the conscientious role of the Namibian people has been and remains a critical element in the success of this endeavour.

Indeed, it is vital that every citizen continue to fully adhere to and diligently implement, the government’s guidelines in force until the on-going task of detailed and comprehensive assessment to gauge the spread of the pandemic in the entire country with full certainty is accomplished.

Going forward, transparency will be a key ingredient in creating an environment that will see us annihilate the invisible enemy that today confronts us. Encouragingly, President Geingob has exhibited unprecedented transparency throughout his reign recently recusing Ministers from cabinet due to their conflicting interests in the lucrative fishing sector.

While this was a first for Namibia’s executive, such transparent ideals can help us settle into our ‘new normal’ and ensure that we continue of our path towards winning the fight against Covid-19.