Government not ready to fight coronavirus-Chilima

State Vice President Dr. Saulos Chilima has called for adoption of new measures in the fight against coronavirus.

Chilima, who is also the leader of UTM party, made the call on Wednesday in his public address on COVID-19 where he made a number of propositions.

According to Chilima, Malawi is not even 10 percent prepared in the fight against COVID-19 because it is still lagging behind with basic medical equipment such as ventilators and test kits.

Chilima said: “How can we fight this virus if we cannot test people as advised by World Health Organisation? This government may not be serious with testing and there is no massive campaign to test people.

“This government may not be prepared to defend us because how can we have 20 thousand testing kits for a population of 18 million people and claim to be serious about fighting coronavirus.”

He further expressed the need to have more testing centers since the country has only three; two in Blantyre and one in Lilongwe.

Chilima has also suggested that the Ministerial Committee on COVID-19 must stop receiving allowances and “they should now commit a further 40 percent of their salaries towards the fight against coronavirus”.

The vice president has further asked President Peter Mutharika to remove Value Added Tax (VAT) and Surtax on medical equipment and hygiene items, and reduce Pay As You Earn (PAYE) for the low and middle earners for the next three to six months.

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