Fear has engulfed Tanzanian parliament with MPs calling for the suspension of house sessions after one of their colleagues tested positive for COVID-19.
According to reports by Tanzanian media, the Deputy Tulia Ackson without naming the politician confirmed the incident adding that the MP had traveled to the commercial capital, Dar es Salaam, the country’s epicenter of infections.
The parliament sessions are reported to have started about three weeks ago, where precautionary measures including allowing fewer MPs in the house, reduced discussion hours and video conferencing were initiated.
Some politicians have called for the suspension of the sessions to allow testing of all legislators as well as allow for disinfection of the chambers.
“There shall be no two sets of laws – for MPs and for the people. All MPs should be isolated, tested and contact-traced. Right from the beginning, we advised that the parliament sessions should not be held. It’s dangerous,” said Zitto Kabwe, an opposition MP and leader of the ACT-Wazalendo party.
However, some have stuck to the mantra that all sessions must continue and operations should keep running without interruptions.
Tanzania President John Pombe Magufuli has been under fire for not heeding to WHO directives on curbing the spread of Coronavirus.
The country has experienced a surge in the number of cases of COVID-19 with 84 new cases being reported within 24 hours. The number currently stands at 254, with 10 fatalities.
According to the Tanzanian Head of State, his style of leadership involves prayers to fight the COVID-19 pandemic, a move that has ignited criticism.
For instance, last month, Magufuli refused to close churches despite calls from medical experts from all quarters claiming the virus was “satanic” and that there was no way it could thrive in ‘Christ’s Body’.
“Corona cannot survive in the body of Christ; it will burn. That is exactly why I did not panic while taking the Holy Communion,” said Magufuli.
He ideally ordered three-days national prayer for the country to seek healing.
Schools and public events have however been banned to prevent the spread of contagious disease just like neighboring countries, Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda.
The majority of people now believe that the surge in the number of COVID-19 cases in the country is as a result of the President’s lack of seriousness in handling the global health crisis that has greatly affected even superpowers like the United States, United Kingdom and Germany just to mention a few.