Cameroon: South West Region - Authorities Wrestle Pandemic in Public Places

The Regional Governor was in the streets of Buea Wednesday accompanied by the Mayor of Buea to announce new measures against the Covid-19 pandemic.

Forthwith, on-the-spot consumption of food, wine, alcohol, sanitary and traditional drinks is prohibited throughout the South West Region. Buyers must take their items away to their homes to use them. These are the most recent measures to comply in the entire Region to align with government social prescription in the face of the worsening killing Covid-19 virus. South West Governor Bernard Okalia Bilai put pen on paper on 31 March, 2020, to frame a Regional Order relayed by his subsequent communiqué urging its largest dissemination through the media. On account of the new measures the Governor went down the streets, the markets and the bars within the Buea vicinity on 1st April, 2020. His mission was to sensitise the general public on the next repressive move to be engaged by the Forces of Law and Order if people continued in the way of indiscipline. As the authorities made their stop-overs from up-town to the down-town Mile 17 Bus Station, across the city, key observations were made to confirm that the fear of the virus was still staggering. People still clustered in bars as they drank. Worse, some drank exchanging from the same bottles with loved ones. Also, they extended their spree in bars beyond the prescribed 6pm. This meant that promiscuity was even more penetrating in the dark. Moving into the markets, the Governor and Mayor David Mafani Namange observed that social spacing was still an issue. Sellers still displayed food items on the ground especially vegetables, tomatoes and the like at the Great Soppo food market. For these reasons, the Governor urged the Mayor to create another food market near the OIC. This new market was to begin functioning before weekend. As such, there would be no reason again for the social distancing to be disrespected. In the streets of the Regional capital city of Buea, the Governor employed pedagogy to sensitise businesses to close by 6pm. He emphasised that owners provide water for users or visitors to wash their hands. At an earlier meeting the Governor called on transport syndicates and officials to ensure that taxis and buses respect sitting distancing.

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