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State Counsellor says Myanmar still free of COVID-19

State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said on Monday that Myanmar has no cases of COVID-19, after a Myanmar man who attended a conference in France last week and was in contact with a Filipino who later tested positive, tested negative for the disease.

“Until now, no one in our country is infected with COVID-19,” Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said in a nationwide televised address on Monday.

She called on people to unite behind the government’s efforts to fight the pandemic, which has spread to nearly 150 countries.

“I would like to highlight to you a key component to decrease the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak. It’s quite simple – it’s the people,” she said. No matter how good government policies are, in order for them to the effective, as I’ve said several times, we need the cooperation of our citizens.”

Daw Aung San Suu Kyi said the government is establishing a fund to fight the disease “to which citizens can contribute.”

“I urge those of who would like to donate to give as much as you can,” she said.

“The main strength that a nation possesses is its citizens. We are not a powerful nation. We have to solve the challenges related to peace, development, and democracy,” she added. “In order for our national plan to succeed, the most important thing is the people.”

The health ministry said the 37-year-old man who was tested after returning from France volunteered to be quarantined shortly after arriving in Yangon on Friday even though he had no symptoms of the disease. He was taken to a hospital in Hmawbi township in Yangon and transferred to Waibagi Hospital in Yangon on Sunday.

Health authorities said test results showed the man did not have the disease.

Ten people are being tested, the health ministry said in a statement, including two Myanmar nationals who travelled in Germany on March 16 and one who had been in Thailand and showed signs of respiratory illness.

“As of now, the tests for COVID-19 are negative. The patients are in good health,” said Daw Khin Khin Gyi, deputy director of the Central Epidemiology Unit at the Department of Public Health.

Myanmar, which has reported no cases of COVID-19 since the pandemic began in Wuhan, China, on December 31, has tested more than 100 people for the virus but all were negative.

Last week, the World Health Organisation declared COVID-19 a pandemic. The disease has spread to nearly 150 countries, afflicted more than 169,000 people, and caused over 6500 deaths.

Myanmar has suspended all large public gatherings – including the Thingyan Festival in April, the country’s biggest annual holiday – in a bid to prevent an outbreak of the disease here.

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Source : Myanmar Times

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