The President of Sierra Leone, Julius Maada Bio, has announced that the government will work with development partners to find ways to soften and leverage the socio-economic impact of COVID-19 on businesses and vulnerable communities.
The President was speaking at an emergency press conference at State House in Freetown, convened to inform citizens about the country’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Sierra Leone registered its first case on March 31, confirmed as a 37-year-old Sierra Leonean who flew into the country from France on March 16. He was quarantined on arrival and tested positive for the virus at the end of the quarantine period.
According to the government, a COVID-19 Emergency Response Team has started contact tracing all primary and secondary contacts linked to the index case to prevent the spread of the virus within the country. President Bio stated that he has boosted the country’s surveillance response structure and facilities to respond to COVID-19.
The President also strongly encouraged citizens to observe enhanced hygiene practices and social distancing as measures to prevent an outbreak of COVID-19 in Sierra Leone.