LILONGWE, 11 January 2021 – Malawi’s President Lazarus Chakwera has taken personal blame for the less than successful effort to stem the spread of COVID-19 in the country.
Many Malawians, “including myself”, dropped their guard, failing to adhere strictly to COVID-19 prevenvention measures, Chakwera admitted on a radio address.
President Chakwera was wildly criticized last week when state television posted a video showing him visiting with American pop star, Madonna.
The video showed the Malawian leader shaking hands and posing for pictures with Madonna.
Neither Chakwera nor Madonna was wearing masks and they were definitely not maintaining social distance.
The Malawian leader called on security forces to enforce new, stricter COVID-19 prevention measures that include a ban on mass gatherings and the closure of bars and clubs by 8pm.
Chakwera, who is also a pastor, pledged in the address to fast and pray for God to heal those who suffer from the virus and hasten a lasting medical solution to defeat the pandemic.
Malawi has seen a spike in coronavirus cases as well as in the number of fatalities.
The country’s health ministry says no fewer than 200 Malawians have died from the virus, with 30 of them dying during the last fortnight.
Singer and broadcaster Maria Chidjanja Nkhoma and the administrative head of the country’s Ministry of Information Ernest Kantchentche are among two high-profile personalities to have died from complications from the virus.