• Saturday, May 30, 2020
  • Last Update : 03:11 pm

Government to hold emergency meeting Monday

  • Published at 02:37 pm March 29th, 2020
Two women die, suspected to be Covid-19 patients
Local authorities in protective gear near Ismat Ara's house in Bogra Dhaka Tribune

Will public holidays be extended?

The government will hold an emergency meeting on Monday to devise a strategy to tackle the current coronavirus situation in the country.

The meeting will be held at 11am at the Prime Minister's Office on Monday, the Press Information Department (PID) said in a news brief on Sunday.

According to the press note, the meeting will assess the extent of possible losses to the country’s economy due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic so as to devise a strategy to overcome the situation. 

Senior officials at the Prime Minister's Office are expected to connect with divisional and district administrations during the meeting in an effort to take stock of the situation and the challenges for implementing social distancing measures and other guidelines.

"After that, senior officials of the Prime Minister's Office and secretaries concerned of the government, will sit with Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina on Tuesday. They will bring up to date information to the prime minister and update her about the measures in the fight against the spread of the coronavirus,” said an official seeking anonymity.

"After an assessment of the situation, Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina could revise strategies including the issue of extending the holidays, if required,” he added.

"We have been executing the guidelines set forth by the Prime Minister’s Office to combat the coronavirus outbreak. The divisional, district and upazila administrations have been working to ensure social distancing measures,” said Shaikh Yusuf Harun, secretary of the Ministry of Public Administration.

He told Dhaka Tribune: "All government officials are closely coordinating with each other and people in general are responding well. At the same time, we were up against some challenges."  

Asked if the government was going to adopt a fresh resolution to fight against the coronavirus outbreak, Shaikh Yusuf said it was not possible for him to say anything right now.

Meanwhile, Health Minister Zahid Maleque said: “Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina has constantly been updated about the coronavirus situation. She will take a decision about extending the public holiday in response to the Covid-19 situation.

He made the comment while answering reporters on a Facebook event, on Sunday.

He said if the coronavirus situation takes a turn for the worse, government authorities will take urgent measures.  

On March 23, the government declared a 10-day shut down effective from March 26 to April 4 to combat the spread of the coronavirus. The government also imposed containment measures including social distancing since March 24 across the country.

Bangladesh has so far confirmed five deaths and 48 infections from Covid-19.

The fast spreading coronavirus, which was first reported in China's Wuhan, has infected 683,694 people and claimed 32,115 lives till 8:00pm on Sunday, according to Worldometer. 

Globally, 146,396 infected people have also recovered from Covid-19, a pandemic announced by the World Health Organization (WHO).

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