By ILIESA TORA
Suva, FIJI – March 31, 2020: 4pm (Nuku’alofa Times): Majority of our Pasifika islands are inlockdown.
The Novel Coronavirus or COVID-19 has virtually put a stop to the global movements of almost everything.
While Wuhan in China, where it originated from about four months ago, has started to relax some restrictions the majority of us around the globe and the Pasifika especially, have gone on lockdown mode.
That includes our very own Kingdom of Tonga and my homeland of Fiji.
Tonga has been lucky that there is no confirmed case to date and there are no suspected cases either.
Government has been on the front foot and put in place restrictions in line with the World Health Organization guidelines and that of the Ministry of Health.
Since last week the airports and ports closed off to normal flights and sea visits.
At the weekend the restrictions on movements were implemented.
That, as Dr Siale Akauola stated, should help in ensuring that Tonga is safe.
Workers have been told to work from home for government departments, except those offering essential services.
Shops have closed and the nightlife curbed.
That seems to be working well but then again the question asked is how long will this go on for.
Dr Akauola has told a local media company that the 14 days is not enough to prepare the Kingdom.
This is because Health needs equipment to fight the war, as Fijian Prime Minister Frank Bainimarama has called it.
Dr Akauola reckons it might need a longer period to get things sorted out, equip our frontlines and have the ability to test nation wide for the COVID-19.
So that means we might have to endure this a bit longer.
Bottomline is people need to be safe.
Which then brings out the ownership and responsibility aspect.
Governments can not fight this alone.
The onus is on all of us.
Together we can defeat this crisis.
People must work together.
Politicians need to do the same.
Put away political differences and let’s focus on protecting our people.
We owe it to ourselves.
Let’s do this for our families, our communities, our countries, our Pasifika and our world.