Guinea-Bissau extends state of emergency until June 10

Bissau-Guinean President Umaro Sissoco Embalo

Bissau-Guinean President Umaro Sissoco Embalo decided on Tuesday to extend the state of emergency for another 15 days until June 10.

The decision was taken after analyzing the evolution of the situation of COVID-19 throughout the national territory, he said in a presidential decree, noting that the situation has not changed during past 15 days when the country registered many cases.

“The rapid increase in contaminations is very worrying. It is a clear sign that we must continue to adopt measures as a way of preventing and combating the pandemic,” he said.

The curfew from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m will be maintained, and people will still only allowed to leave their homes between 7 a.m. and 2 p.m. to do their grocery shopping.

Embalo also called for the population to respect social distancing and wear masks at all public places, adding that the goverment will elaborate new measures to counter the health and economic impacts caused by the COVID-19.

The small West African Portuguese-speaking country has been isolating itself since March 17 when the government ordered the closure of all borders and suspension of all international flights. Several other drastic measures have been taken as well, including the closing of restaurants, bars, places of worship and schools, as well as the ban on gatherings.

Due to lack of lab materials, the national laboratory sometimes couldn’t carry out tests. But Guinea-Bissau received on Monday a third donation of medical equipment, including testing kits, from China‘s Jack Ma and Alibaba foundations.

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