The spirit of sacrifice, sense of patriotism and duty, and determination demonstrated by frontliners of the Mauritius Police Force, who have been at the service of the country, day and night, amid the Covid-19 pandemic, were lauded by the Prime Minister, Mr Pravind Kumar Jugnauth, this morning, in Vacoas.
The Prime Minister met the Police frontliners at the Philippe Oh San Auditorium, Police Band Head Quarters, in presence of the Commissioner of Police, Mr Karl Mario Nobin, and the staff of the Mauritius Police Force. He also paid tribute to the law enforcement agents who led the fight against Covid-19 on the front to safeguard the safety and wellbeing of Mauritians and guarantee that the tenets of law and order are respected. A one-minute silence was observed for citizens who, ten in all, have lost their lives to the virus among whom one Police officer, posted at the Passport and Immigration Office.
In his address, Mr Jugnauth spoke of the sense of sacrifice which the Police has shown, one, which he observed, no other generation of Police Officers have ever had to show. In fact, never before had the country been confronted to such a situation and the compassion of the Mauritius Police Force has touched each citizen, he emphasised.
The Prime Minister expressed pride, solidarity and gratitude to each Police Officer who has remained devoted during the lockdown and has shown courage, leaving their families to make sure that citizens stay indoors. The mission of all Government, he recalled, is to ensure the protection and security of the population as a whole, and, undoubtedly it is the Police Force that has the greatest role in this endeavour.
According to him, before the spread of the Covid-19, the Mauritian society had to face all types of threats such as drug proliferation, thefts, crimes and other dangers. To curb these crimes, all the divisions of the Police Force were already doing a great job wherever they were posted, he recalled.
Mr Jugnauth also paid homage to the work accomplished by all including the Commissioner of Police who was shouldered by the Deputy Commissioners of Police and those who were on field and had to brave numerous risks namely, on roads and beaches, as well as across supermarkets and shops, to ensure that all citizens abide by precautionary and sanitary measures.
In many regions of Mauritius, the Prime Minister highlighted, these Officers have helped to distribute food supplies, amongst others, to those families on the Social Register of Mauritius and to the vulnerable. They have been likewise active by undertaking other numerous initiatives to help those in difficulty, he praised.
In addition, along with Post Office employees and Social Security Officers, Police Officers have contributed in enabling that the elderly be paid directly in their homes, the old-age pension, as well as allocations to the disabled. These Officers were all exposed to the risk of being contaminated.
Moreover, Mr Jugnauth indicated that next week, a new turn in the fight against Covid-19 will take place. This disease, such as a tsunami, has caused an unprecedented situation worldwide and has not been without any consequence both on the economic and social fronts, he observed. Fortunately, in Mauritius, since more than a month now, the country has recorded no new local positive cases although two imported cases have been reported. Mauritius, he further stated, is also one of the first countries to have put a quarantine system in place.
On the international front, the Prime Minister remarked that now many countries are easing their lockdown despite cases being on the rise worldwide. Mauritius, he pointed out, is going in the right direction but it is important to remain vigilant and maintain all sanitary measures. As, even if there are no new cases, yet, it does not mean that within the community there are no cases, so we cannot afford to take any risks, he cautioned.
The Prime Minister announced that tomorrow, during Cabinet Meeting, an assessment of the situation will be made, and, discussions will focus on the next phase that will take place next week and the population will be kept abreast of latest development.
More than ever, said Mr Jugnauth, the country needs the support of Police Officers not only to maintain law and order, but also, to make sure that Mauritius records no new Covid-19 case. Together we have to continue working to make of Mauritius a Covid-free country, he emphasised, and remarked that Rodrigues and Agalega Islands have been spared due to strict actions initiated. We are raging a war and even if we have triumphed over several battles, the war is yet to be won, he stated.