KOHIMA, JULY 22: “Mankind is at war with COVID-19 and the only defence and weapon for this are the COVID-19 appropriate behaviours, SOPs, testing and vaccination”, stated the Minister for PWD (Housing and Mechanical) Tongpang Ozukum at a sensitisation programme on COVID-19 testing and vaccination at Tseminyu Sub-Division.
Legislators in charge of COVID-19 activities in Kohima, Tongpang Ozukum, Advisor Dr. Neikiesalie Kire, Advisor R Khing, Advisor Medo Yhokha, accompanied by DC Kohima, and members of Angami Public Organisation (APO) and Angami Youth Organisation (AYO) visited the Sub-Division on July 22.
The sensitisation programme was held in two sessions ~ the first session for 25 villages at Town Hall Tseminyu, and the second at Chunlikha Local Ground for 14 villages.
Addressing the representatives at the Town Hall, Ozukum said that COVID-19 was declared as an epidemic by the Government of India on March 11, 2020, and assured that all regulations and laws passed relating to COVID-19 were in consonance with the Epidemic Diseases Act, 1897.
Relaying the wishes of the State Government, Ozukum urged the people not to be afraid by opting for testing and avail the vaccines.
“Before the arrival of vaccine, there was a public outcry for vaccines to address the pandemic but when the vaccine came people have become doubtful”, he said.
Pointing out that the Government cannot forcefully test or vaccinate the people, he said: “It is everyone’s responsibility to take the step forward in order to best address the pandemic”.
Ozukum also urged the people to trust the advice of medical experts and further requested the village leaders to go to their respective villages and educate the people and clear their doubts they have about the vaccine.
“The percentage of COVID-19 vaccination is very low in Tseminyu Sub-division due to misinformation and false information that is circulating through social media”, stated President of Rengma Hoho, Pollem Tep. He further urged the attendees to refrain from forwarding “unwarranted videos” about the vaccine.
ADC, Tseminyu, W Manpai Phom informed that during the second wave of COVID-19, 1,205 testings were done for the whole of Tseminyu Sub-Division, out of which 213 tested positive. At present, the Sub-Division has 1 active case, he added.
He also informed that as per the internal assessment done within the Sub-Division, “only 3000 people have been vaccinated so far, which accounts for 37.8% of the population eligible for vaccination”.
Medo Yhokha reminded the people that everyone is blessed with the ability to differentiate between good and bad things. “I believe you all will do the right thing for yourself and the community”, he added.
The medical team accompanying the DTF was led by CMO, Kohima, who explained to the people the importance of COVID-appropriate behaviour, testing and vaccination.
“SOPs, testing, early treatment and vaccination are the only way to win over the pandemic”, she said.
CMO, Kohima, also stressed on the importance of isolation if one is tested positive in order to keep the community safe.
Pointing out the need for Nagaland State to remove the stigmatisation attached with COVID-19, CMO, Kohima, asserted that “we have to ramp up the testing in order to prevent the emergence of a third wave in our State”.
She also said that setting up physical barricades is not enough to prevent the penetration of the virus in any area. “Increase in testing and vaccination are the only way through which we can prevent the emergence of the third wave”, CMO, Kohima, added.
DC, Kohima, Gregory Thejawalie remarked: “While we are in the 16th month (since the first case), COVID is still here. Even though vaccination in Nagaland started on January 16, 2021, there has been death even in the month of July”, he added.
The DC, who is also Chairman of DTF, took the example of Euro 2020 played recently across European countries that were badly infected by the pandemic. He said that the reason why people were able to watch the match at the stadium in large numbers was because they were vaccinated.
(Page News Service)