Mogadishu, Thursday, April 02, 2020—Prime Minister of the Federal Republic of Somalia, H.E. Hassan Ali Khaire, addressed the COVID-19/Corona crisis, its impact, and preventative measures.
First and foremost, the Prime Minister recognizes the highly contagious Coronavirus which is affecting the economies, education systems, industries, and the provision of social services including healthcare of some of the world’s most advanced countries; because they underestimated its ability to spread rapidly.
The Prime Minister has made an appeal to telecommunications companies to devote more time to the promotion of COVID-19 preventive messages; as well as calling on the business community to not increase food prices; and has instructed the Ministry of Finance to reduce taxes of basic food and medicines during these difficult times. He also asks the Somali public to take health warnings seriously in order to mitigate the threat and spread of COVID-19.
The Prime Minister asserted that the best protection against COVID-19 is prevention.
The success or failure of the prevention efforts depends primarily on the efforts made at the individual level, along with the national safety plan, and the adherence to the recommendations of leaders and healthcare workers.
H.E. Hassan Ali Khaire reiterated that international and domestic flights, schools, Quranic schools, and universities will be closed until further notice; and stressed that it is crucial to ending all public gatherings and group celebrations.
The Prime Minister sent his deepest condolences to the Somali people, especially the family of the late Prime Minister H.E. Nur Hassan Hussein ‘Nur Adde’, who succumbed to COVID-19 in the United Kingdom. He also extends his condolences to the families of the Somali people who have lost their loved ones around the world as a result of the pandemic, especially in Sweden, the United Kingdom, Denmark, Norway and elsewhere.
HE Hassan Ali Khaire emphasized that it is important to remain vigilant and focus on prevention of the disease, as it spreads rapidly in the Horn of Africa. “Let us recognize and accept that we are in unprecedented times, COVID-19 is real and we have to be extra vigilant in order to save our people from this pandemic. This disease is an enemy that can be defeated.” Said Prime Minister Hassan Ali Khaire.
“My brothers and sisters let us work together to save our nation by fighting this pandemic. We will use all the power of our government to protect our nation from the effects of this disease. We have to make the appropriate preparations and prevention possible,” the Prime Minister reaffirmed.
“In order to fight this disease, the leaders of the Federal Government and the Federal Member States cannot do it alone. We need your support, strength, and most importantly your full attention,” he added.
H.E. Hassan Ali Khaire said the government will work to establish a stimulus plan to supplement the country’s economy, and negotiate with business and donors community to support us in finding solutions to the expected economic challenges the country will be facing during and/after the crisis.