Libre: No to complacency

Mel Libre

THE war against Covid-19 isn’t over yet, even with reports on dwindling number of cases in once hotspot countries such as Italy and Spain and megacities like Wuhan and New York.

In the US for instance, other urban centers and states have seen an increase of coronavirus cases per day with the number crossing two million with 119,000 deaths. China had already declared victory; but now the city of Beijing has reinstated measures to prevent resurgence with 49 cases on June 15.

When we thought everything had returned to normal in New Zealand that had zero cases for the past few weeks, two women who were given compassionate passage to visit their departed mother from the UK were discovered later to be Covid-19 positive.

Cebu City has reverted back to enhanced community quarantine (ECQ) with 4,137 Covid-19 positive patients and 58 deaths.

These just go to show that this enemy can easily slip through borders primarily because of undisciplined carriers, individuals who defy government guidelines. Defenders can only try as much to isolate it until such time that a vaccine is found, mass produced, distributed and injected. While there is no bloodshed, the number of dead has risen towards half a million and that should send chills to us all to the bone. One cannot simply ignore those photos of mass graves in Brazil. The pandemic becomes more real to people when someone they know has died of it.

The Spanish flu pandemic in 1918 that caused the death of nearly 50 million individuals lasted for 15 months. It is said that the second wave was deadlier as people started to put their guard down, thinking that the flu had been contained. If we do not learn from the past, we are bound to repeat our mistakes.

Already reporting on the pandemic has been overtaken by other events such as the race protests in the US, among others, but the pandemic is not going away that easily as the disunity among the strongest among nations has weakened the resolve to terminate it for good.

The World Health Organization that is leading the war is itself under threat as the US is cutting ties due to US President Donald Trump’s lack of confidence in the former’s leadership. In the different battlefronts local officials are fighting hand-to-hand combats using strategies that they see fit and effective.

There is a growing public discontentment and only strong leadership can stop this into turning into chaos. The protests in the US demonstrate how the frustration of the citizenry can turn deadly with one incident of police brutality.

This isn’t just a war fought by public officials, this one requires people power where every individual must become a soldier by listening to the orders of the commander. Onward to victory!