President Edgar Lungu has called for intensified compliance to COVID-19 safety measures to enable the country to open up normal operations in various sectors.
President Lungu was speaking to journalists this morning when he toured Mikomfwa, Main Mpatamato and Roan markets in Luanshya district with a call on traders to help in the fight against COVID -19.
President Lungu urged traders to follow the COVID-19 guidelines and secure the informal sector as it drives the economy of the country.
“We will do not want to close up markets so we are asking you as market leaders, as community leaders, to help us in the way you operate as the as government we want to do our best and secure the informal sector as much of the economy is comprised of the informal sector,” he said.
The President observed that the COVID-19 has ravaged the country, resulting in the closing down of schools, companies and many other activities.
“And from the look of things it’s not ending soon, therefore we are working through you market traders , the DMMU and the ministry of local government ensuring that we observe all the five golden rules such as washing hands, social distancing and so forth, ” he appealed.
And Mikomfwa Main Market Master Fredrick Mulenga appealed to President Lungu to consider upgrading the markets in order to allow more traders to sell from inside.
“ We want to thank you for visiting our district and you are excited by your humility and love you have shown us, however we would like to appeal to you to help us with rehabilitation and upgrading the markets as most of the traders are trading from outside due to inadequate space “ he said.
In his response, President Lungu promised to upgrade and expand the market to the standard befitting the community.
“The market really requires an upgrade of one way or another and that I can assure that using your local council and your leaders, we will do something and am sure your leaders have already seen this and are already working towards improving the market,” he promised
President Lungu further appealed to Zambians to make an informed decision and get vaccinated against COVID-19 to help fight the pandemic.
“ Of course Zambia has a basket full of a variety of vaccines and there is a lot of speculation surrounding the issue of vaccines but as a government we do not want to be seen to be imposing , let people make an informed decision as this is a voluntary decision,” The President said.
He also appealed to the people of Zambia to take advantage of the availability of vaccines that government had made available and get vaccinated.
President Lungu is in Luanshya in the Copperbelt province to check compliance of COVID-19 guidelines in markets.