Defiant mourners dispersed
SANFROSSA MANYINDA writes
THE Chililabombwe Municipal Council dispersed a huge funeral gathering in a crackdown against people flouting covid-19 preventive measures.
The huge gathering witnessed in the border town of the Copperbelt was against the Covid-19 health guidelines of restricting the number of people to 50 mourners or less.
A team of Public Health inspectors swung into action and dispersed the gathering that assembled during the long weekend despite knowing that the deceased died of Covid-19.
The local authority has therefore advised families to only allow close relatives to attend funeral proceedings to avoid putting people at risk of contracting Covid-19.
The council has observed that overcrowding at funeral gatherings was posing a challenge in efforts aimed at preventing the further spread of Covid-19.
Council Director of Public Health, Gift Sakanyi, said the local authority had noticed with great concern the large gatherings at funerals despite the rise in the cases of the pandemic.
He said the local authority was giving a strict warning to residents who were in a laxity mood and ignoring clear guidelines.
“Relatives of any deceased are encouraged to ensure that only close relatives attend the burial proceedings so lives can be protected.
“We all want to mourn our loved ones but we must understand that if we go against the directives given, more people will contract the virus and the death toll in our country will increase,” he said.
Dr. Sakanyi also cautioned churches that had continued holding church services for more than one hour with a large congregation that they would face the law.
He said churches should be ambassadors of goodwill that were expected to lead by example and not conduct themselves in a manner that was contrary to what was expected.
Dr Sakanyi said the council would together with state police continue conducting inspections and dispersing gatherings ensuring that those found wanting faced the wrath of the law.