The World Health Organisation (WHO) Director-General, Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has said that the organisation is yet to receive information from authorities in Tanzania over the spread of the COVID-19 virus in the country and abroad, saying many Tanzanians abroad have been diagnosed with the virus.
The WHO boss revealed that the organisation appealed to Tanzania in late January 2021 to take “robust action” against the pandemic but that the authorities haven’t responded communicating the measures that are being taken.
Since then I have spoken with several authorities in Tanzania but WHO is yet to receive any information regarding what measures Tanzania is taking to respond to the pandemic. This situation remains very concerning. I renew my call for Tanzania to start reporting COVID-19 cases and share data.Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus
The Tanzanian authorities last reported COVID-19 cases in April 2020 when they announced 509 infections. Since then, the government has buried their head in the sand and openly doubted the existence of the virus in the country, encouraging citizens not to wear masks or social distance.
President John Pombe Magufuli even endorsed open campaigns that had him re-elected and collaborated with Madagascar to import herbs they allegedly said would cure the virus.
The Tanganyika Law Society (TLS) President, Rugemeleza Nshala, has called on the government to declare the presence of the virus in the country and to impose mandatory preventive measures, saying 25 lawyers had succumbed to the virus by Friday last week.
He said that according to Section 4 of the TLS Act, the bar association is obliged to provide legal advice to the Executive, Parliament, the Judiciary and the public and that denying the presence of COVID-19 in the country contravenes Article 18 (d) of the Union Constitution.
Denying presence of disease will not permanently address the challenge, rather expertise is required to establish the cause of the problem, the magnitude, effects and mitigation measures.Rugemeleza Nshala, President TLS.