By Ousman A. Marong
The Kanifing Municipal Council (KMC) in collaboration with the Ministry of Health (MoH) together with the National Disaster Management Agency (NDMA), the Gambia Police Force (GPF) and Red Cross Society have joined hands to the fight against COVID-19 pandemic in the Municipality.
Under Pillar 2, of the Council’s Emergency Action Plan for COVID-19 is to launch an initiative that will distribute 50, 000 face masks at 19 markets in the Municipality.
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the council and its partners have taken it upon themselves to donate 50,000 face masks as part of humanitarian efforts.
The Lord Mayor of Kanifing Municipal Council, Ahmed Talib Bensouda, said the Council’s Emergency Action-Plan for COVID-19 is composed of 3 pillars, namely public sensitization, stop the spread, ease the economic and hunger burden. He added that the distribution of 50, 000 face masks is the second pillar of stopping the spread of the deadly disease.
“The initiative today is deploying 50,000 face masks to the market committees in the Municipality,” Mayor Bensouda said.
He further challenged the private sector together with development partners to help achieve the goal of the 50,000 face masks in KMC, adding that the council has worked with the Ministry of Health (MoH) in order to identify scientific identifications for locally made face masks.
“The face masks contain multiple layers of fabric with durable materials that contain materials of hydrophobic properties to keep droplets inside the mask. The shape of the masks should entirely cover both the mouth and chick up to the ears. The fit of the mask should be slut without much movement,” he explained.
However, he encouraged the market vendors to effectively use the face masks and be washing it daily.
Sainabou Martin Sonko, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Kanifing Municipality said COVID-19 poised one of the greatest threats to our existence and the across the globe at large.
She called on all and sundry to maintain practicing the social distancing and remain indoors in order to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Ndey-Fatou Njie, founder of Tiga and also a representative from the Gambia Tailoring Association (GTS) revealed that face masks are essential at this trying time of COVID-19 and therefore they (the tailors) and fashion designers have taken it upon themselves to assist the situation in contributing their quota in the provision of face masks.
“Face mask has become a symbol in the fight against COVID-19. In some countries such as the Czech Republic is now mandatory to wear a face mask before leaving your house. However there is an increasing global shortage of face masks,” she asserted.
Musa Camara, Regional Principal Public Health Office (RPPHO) said COVID-19 is a common enemy thus needs to fight together.
“COVID-19 knows no boundary, but through concerted efforts we will make headways. Fighting the common enemy has taken a holistic approach whereby you relieve the individual who is suffering by protecting them from the disease by providing them with face masks and hand washing materials,” he said.