Leaders must reveal their corona status - Simataa

13 August 2020 | Health

OGONE TLHAGE

WINDHOEK



Secretary to cabinet George Simataa, who recently tested positive for Covid-19, believes that high-ranking officials who have tested positive should declare their health status and encourages those in high office to get tested.

Simataa is the first high-ranking official to declare his Covid-19 status publicly. Simataa was tested for Covid-19 on 6 August and received confirmation on 9 August that he had contracted the disease.

Speaking to Namibian Sun, Simataa said he felt it was important to reveal his status to the public. Simataa said he was feeling fine. “I feel good, really good indeed. There is no difference in the way I have been feeling all along. Therefore, like we from Zambezi would express ourselves when we are fine, we would say, I feel like a monkey jumping from one branch of a tree to another.

“I did not show any symptoms, nor am I showing symptoms now,” he added.



Precautions

Simataa told Namibian Sun that he had become infected despite taking the recommended precautions.

“Since the beginning of Covid-19 in Namibia around March 2020, the Cabinet Secretariat has been hard at work in covering all meetings related to Covid-19 that convene three times a week. This means that we deal with a lot of paperwork as we get to meet different people on a daily basis,” he said.

“I wish to state that the health protocols such as social distancing, wearing of masks and constant sanitising at the said meetings were and are adhered to at all times,” Simataa added.

According to him, officials working close to him have been warned to exercise caution and get tested for Covid-19.





“Despite of all these preventive measures, I felt it necessary to request the executive director in the Office of the Prime Minister to arrange that staff members get tested for Covid-19 as a precautionary measure,” he said.

Simataa said he doubted that he contracted Covid-19 at work. “I might not have gotten the virus from the said meetings, but perhaps from somewhere else.”



President tests negative twice

President Hage Geingob also announced his Covid-19 results after a meeting held with outgoing French ambassador Claire Bodonyi.

Four world leaders have tested positive for Covid-19, including British prime minister Boris Johnson, Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro, Prince Albert of Monaco and Iranian vice-president Masoumeh Ebtekar.

Geingob announced his Covid-19 status on social media yesterday.

“Yesterday, I took a Covid-19 test and received my results this morning. The test came out negative. If you feel any Covid-19-related symptoms, make sure that you get tested as a preventive measure. It is the right thing to do to protect others,” he said.

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