Dili, February 22nd, 2021 – His Excellency the Prime-Minister, Taur Matan Ruak, deeply thanked the Timorese Episcopal Conference (CET) for its support to the Government in the fight against the COVID-19 pandemic, especially in raising community awareness about the risk of this pandemic, helping that Timor-Leste may achieve mitigation and that, to date, there have been no cases of death, adding that this achievement is a collective achievement.
“This is really a collective achievement, and the Church has always been by our side”. I, personally, as Head of Government, would like to thank you for all the efforts of the Episcopal Conference, which helped us to raise awareness among our citizens about the imminent risks to public health, and led them to participate and cooperate in fighting against this disease”, said the Head of Government, on the occasion of the signing of the annual grant with CET, last Friday.
In addition, the Head of Government explained that the Government continues to make efforts in this mitigation phase, because of the cases in West Timor, where there is already community contagion, and because of illegal border crossing, which carries the risk that community transmission will probably also take place in Timor-Leste. For this reason, the Government decided to anticipate and establish a sanitary fence in the municipalities of Bobonaro and Covalima, to avoid movement and to give health teams time to collect samples from communities where there are suspicious of physical contact with people who made the illegal crossing.
Meanwhile, the Government, following the recommendations of the World Health Organization (WHO), decided to proceed with the AstraZeneca vaccine, in the first phase for 20% of the population and, in a second phase, the Government will invest in the purchase of vaccines for the remaining 80% of the population, with the aim of increasing people’s immunity and reducing the risk of contagion from COVID-19.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, Timor-Leste has recorded 86 positive cases of COVID-19 (with the first case to be registered in March 2020, and counting until today, February 22), mostly imported cases, and currently has 21 active cases, which are isolated and being monitored at the Vera Cruz Health Centre, with no case of the death being recorded. END/M-PMO