On 11th March, 2020 the World Health Organisation (WHO) declared the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak a Pandemic. On the 15th of March, Prime Minister Voreqe Bainimarama announced that from the 16th of March cruise ships would be banned from berthing anywhere around Fiji while the Fiji boarder Security was toughened screening all international guests entering the country.
Although drastic steps were taken to prevent the virus from entering Fiji’s boarders, the first case was recorded on the 19th of March. A 27 year old Fijian Citizen who was also a flight attendant with Fiji’s main International Air carrier. Fast forward to 1st June, 2020 Fiji has had 18 total confirmed cases with 15 patients already recovered from COVID-19 and only 3 cases still being attended to in Isolation centers. One can say that we are safe, yet we should not be too relaxed as the pandemic still roams around the world.
A summary of the 18 confirmed patients are as follows:
- First case: 27-year-old male from Lautoka.
- Second case: 47-year-old female from Lautoka.
- Third case: 1-year-old male from Lautoka.
- Fourth case: 28-year-old male from Nasinu.
- Fifth case: 30-year-old female from Lautoka.
- Sixth case: 22-year-old female from Suva.
- Seventh case: 33-year-old male from Suva.
- Eighth case: 39-year-old female from Lautoka.
- Ninth case: 53-year-old male from Labasa.
- Tenth case: 20-year-old female from Nadi.
- Eleventh case: 26-year-old female from Labasa.
- Twelfth case: 11-year-old female from Suva.
- Thirteenth case: 21-year-old female from Lautoka.
- Fourteenth case: 53-year-old female from Labasa.
- Fifteenth case: 33-year-old male from Lautoka.
- Sixteenth case: 9-year-old female from Labasa.
- Seventeenth case: 21-year-old male from Labasa.
- Eighteenth case: 51-year-old female from Ba.
Source: Ministry of Health and Medical Services, Fiji.
Just like many countries around the world where the COVID-19 has reached their shores, Fiji has had it’s boarders closed to International visitors, schools have remained close from the 23rd of March, 2020 and is expected to resume on the 15th of June, 2020. Many people have lost their jobs of which a large portion is from the Tourism Industry and this has also drastically affected the economy as Tourism is one of Fiji’s main sources of income. A nationwide curfew is in place from 10pm to 5am to ensure that social gatherings of 20 or less people are kept to a minimum.
While the Global Pandemic has affected the people of Fiji in various ways, it has also taught us a valuable lesson. Many people are returning to farms and planting food for sustenance willingly accepting the pandemics effects and associating with Nature again. Natural resources are now being used for daily living, something which has often been neglected especially for those living in Urban areas. Home gardening is now being practiced once again, using materials found around their compound such as old tyres, old sacks, bottles and tins. Innovative ways of gardening are now being adventured across the country and the Government has provided people with seeds for their gardens.
As you read this article from any part of Fiji or the World, the Mix FM Team hopes that all is well from your end. Stay safe, practice social distancing, wash your hands for at least 20 seconds and eat plenty of healthy food. Also ensure that you are well entertained, go out for walks or runs and take a break often to breathe in fresh air. Your mental health should be prioritized in these tough times.
“We Shall Overcome”