Saturday, March 28, 2020

Covid-19 curfew, if imposed, should be 24-hour lockdown , says Wissanu

Mar 25. 2020
Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam
Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam
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By THE NATION

If the government imposed a curfew, it should be round-the-clock , said Deputy Prime Minister Wissanu Krea-ngam today (March 25).

Curfews enforced in the past were for reasons of national security with duration of curfew hours. But to deal with a virus, which can infect people at all time, it should be 24 hours, he said.

However, even if occurs , there will be timeframe/s where people are allowed to leave their homes to buy foods and for logistics firms to deliver consumer goods, he added.

He said currently Thailand is not under a lockdown as people can still return to the country.

The government has also allowed many venues to continue operations , including factories, banks, pharmacies, financial institutions, eateries, and shops that sell necessary consumer items , he added.

He said the government did not announce a curfew today, adding that the declaration of a curfew and a state of emergency is not the same .

The Cabinet on Tuesday approved the government's proposal to invoke the emergency decree which will be enforced from March 26 (tomorrow) until April 30.

Following the state of emergency declaration, Thailand will close all ports of entry for travellers with the exception of those granted entry permits  by the prime minister, shippers, non-Thais with work permits, embassy staff and representatives of international bodies and foreign governments. 

He added that the state of emergency decree mainly deal with banning, permitting, and disallowing activities in society.

It prohibits entry into high-risk venues ordered closed temporarily by provincial governors. The governors of other provinces, where the closure order is not in force, should consider following suit to create a concerted front in the fight against Covid-19.

In term of what people should do, he said they should stay at home except for essential travels such as going to see a doctor.

He advised the three high-risk groups - people aged over 70, those with existing illness such as diabetes, respiratory problems, and children under 5 years of age - to stay home at all time.

He added that the government did not ban people from travelling to other provinces but measures will be implemented to make such outings less convenient. Checkpoints will be set up on the ways to see if travellers are wearing masks and temperature- scanning will also be conducted selectively. They will also be required to download an application to track their locations.

Thailand's total number of Covid-19 cases rose to 934, after 107 new infections were confirmed over a 24-hour period, Dr Taweesin Visanuyothin, spokesman for the Ministry of Public Health, said on Wednesday (March 25).

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