Wednesday, March 25, 2020

Total containment: President Paul Biya speaks out finally

On March 24, 2020, Cameroonian Prime Minister Joseph Ngute made a statement on the Covid-19 pandemic, following the government meeting to monitor the response plan against COVID-19.

The restrictive measures prescribed by the President of the Republic of Cameroon, Paul Biya, will be applied with the utmost rigor and offenders will be punished… and punished with imprisonment from 03 months to 03 years”. 

Thus, the measures taken will be binding from now on. For strict or partial or total containment or whatever, he said there was never any question of that and that the government was not even considering it. 237online offers in its entirety the declation of the Head of Government. 



Ladies and Gentlemen, 

On very high instructions from the President of the Republic, His Excellency Paul BIYA, was held this Tuesday, March 24, 2020, a meeting of the Interministerial Committee responsible for evaluating the implementation of the government's plan of response to the spread of the pandemic of coronavirus in Cameroon.

At the end of the presentations and exchanges recorded during this meeting, two major observations were made: First, the spread of the coronavirus is effective in our country. 

The investigations carried out in the field by the specialized services of the Ministry of Public Health, as well as the samples taken from several samples of suspect cases have confirmed sixty-six (66) cases of patients tested positive for COVID-19, including fifty and one (51) case in Yaoundé, twelve (12) cases in Douala and three (03) cases in Bafoussam. 

It follows that the cities of Yaoundé, Douala and Bafoussam constitute for the moment, the three main foci of this pandemic in Cameroon. I would like to remind you that a week ago, when I spoke on the development of this disease for the first time, ten (10) people were affected by this virus in our country. 

At this point in my remarks, I regret to announce that Cameroon has registered today its first case of death from the coronavirus. 

The second major observation is that certain restrictive measures prescribed by the Head of State on March 17, 2020, in order to limit the spread of this virus in our country, are unfortunately not respected by a very large number of our compatriots. 

These include in particular:

systematic closing of drinking places, restaurants and places of leisure from 6 p.m .; 

banning gatherings of more than fifty (50) people; 

the prohibition of overloads in buses, taxis and mototaxis; 

restriction of urban and interurban travel; 

regulating consumer flows in markets and shopping centers; 

respect for the rules of hygiene and the measure of social distancing decreed by the World Health Organization.

It should be remembered that the coronavirus spreads quickly in places of high human concentration, and through close contacts. 

In this regard, people who refuse to observe these restrictive measures, under any pretext whatsoever, endanger their own life, that of others and of the whole nation. 

The acts of indiscipline, recklessness or even unconsciousness that have been observed in recent days, contribute greatly to the spread of this epidemic in our country. 

This is why, on very high instructions from the President of the Republic, the restrictive measures which were taken on March 17, within the framework of the implementation of the Plan of response against the coronavirus, will now be applied with the greatest great rigor and offenders will be punished. 

As a reminder, article 260 of our Penal Code punishes by imprisonment from three (03) months to three (03) years anyone who, by his conduct, facilitates the transmission of a contagious and dangerous disease. 

With this in mind, the administrative and municipal authorities, as well as the police, have been instructed to strengthen controls and to take all useful and necessary measures so that the measures prescribed by the Head of State be respected by everyone everywhere.

To conclude, I would like to clarify, to dispel some rumors that have been widely circulated through social networks for the past few days, that no decision to contain the population in whole or in part has been prescribed by the Head of State. 

Furthermore, it is essential to limit gatherings and non-essential travel, and to comply with the instructions already laid down, in order to prevent the spread of the virus leading to greater restriction of activities useful for our daily life.