By Idowu Abdullahi,
Korean citizens have been thrown into panic after 52 new cases of Coronavirus was reported, which brought total number of infections in the country to 156, and hundreds more suspected to have been infected by the virus.
The new recorded cases were alleged to be related to a church associated with a minor religious sect, Shincheonji church, with 35 of the 52 new coronavirus patients being congregation members, as well as 409 more who were reported to have shown symptoms of the disease, and around 343 church members who had not been reached by authorities.
The South Korea’s Prime Minister, Chung Sye-kyun, confirmed that the country had located new 52 people infected with the deadly diseases and have been taken into custody.
Speaking to pressmen in country on Friday, Sye-kyun explained that the number of COVID-19 infections in southeastern region had almost tripled in just three days, with most new infections being traced to a branch of Shincheonji church in Daegu, 300 kilometers southeast of Seoul.
He added that Daegu and neighboring North Gyeongsang Province, which together are home to a population of 5 million, had commenced standard emergency protocols to curb the spread of the virus, and facilitate adequate treatment of those already infected.
The Prime Minister stated that Daegu and Cheongdo in North Gyeongsang Province had been designated as special care zones following the mass outbreak and urged residents to refrain from going outdoors, minimise interactions with each other, wear face masks and report to designated centers as soon as any symptoms of illness were experienced.
He assured citizens of government efforts in curbing the spread of coronavirus, stating that high alert had been raised in several regions and that the country would put swift measures in place to prevent further spread of the virus, which, he described as an emergency situation.
In a bid to cordon disease outbreak, the city also recommended that more than 1,300 preschools close down, while 252 welfare facilities for the elderly were to be closely monitored on concerns over their health and wellbeing.
Concerns over the city’s public health capacity are rising as some emergency units have been closed and health personnel quarantined after people who were later confirmed as patients were found to have visited.
Sye-kyun vowed government efforts to take strong and swift measures to prevent further spread of the virus, and called for cooperation from citizens and residents, to maintain calm and orderliness while complying with laid down restrictions till the emergency situation was over.
“We will do all that is necessary and clamp down firmly on this coronavirus. Emergency protocols are in place, healthcare personnel are already available to handle this issue,”
“However, we would like the support of South-Koreans, stay in your homes, follow all the guidelines that have been given. Come to the hospital once you notice that you are ill, come once you know you have been in contact with someone who is ill. Together, we will curb this menace”.