Malawi: Chakwera Assures Frightened Malawians We'll Overcome Covid-19's 'Crusade of Death' - Declares State of Disaster, Chilima to Lead Health Guidelines Review

12 January 2021

'Come what may, we shall overcome!' President Lazarus Chakwera on Tuesday had to do some straight talking to convince frightened Malawian that we can safely overcome the coronavirus pandemic's brutal "crusade of death" and declared a State of Disaster to cut densification.

Chakwera said this when he addressed the nation following the death of Local Government Minister Lingson Berekanyama and Transport Minister Sidik Mia who both died with Covid-19 on Tuesday.

The President admits that Malawi is entering a new danger zone, saying the death of the two ministers is an "incalculable loss" to the nation.

He has appealed to the international community, private sector for support, hitting that his administration is considering declaring a 'state of emergency'.

"What we have announced today is just a step to that; but this will require wider consultation with parliament," he said.

President Chakwera said he has directed ministers of Health, Information, Homeland Security, Justice, to work with Vice President Saulos Klaus Chilima to review public health guidelines where necessary.

"We as a people have what it takes not only to survive this but to defeat it," said Chakwera.

The President has reminded the public to adhere to Covid measures, saying "each one of us is not safe."

He said: "We must all rise together and do what the health experts tell us. Each one of us must wear a mask in public, social distance, wash hands. All of us must be vigilant, we are fighting for our very lives and our future."]

Chakwera used his address to the nation to instil confidence and deliver a message of optimism about overcoming the pandemic

"We as a people have what it takes to not just survive this but to defeat it.

"We must rise together as one army to defeat this. We can do it and we must do it. Each one of us must care for the health of his neighbour," he stressed.

Continued Chakwera: "None of us is safe so that means each one of us must be vigilant.

"We are fighting for our every lives and the future of our nation and next generation. It is a fight we must win.

"Come what may, we shall overcome!"

Chakwera appealed for a huge collective effort as Malawi entered its three-day national mourning where flags will fly at half mask.

The President has since called for an emergency meeting of the Presidential taskforce on Covid-19 to discuss further measures - likely a national lockdown.

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