COVID-19 In Ethiopia – First Lady Releases Song To Console Citizens


The First Lady of Ethiopia, Zinash Tayachew, has released a gospel song. The song is to console her country people after her husband declared a national state of emergency. The 5-month emergency period is for helping stop the spread of COVID-19 in Ethiopia.

Titled Maren, which is Amharic for “have mercy on us”, the First Lady calls unto God to have mercy on His people. She sings in a church set up with a cross in the background where she tells God to not abandon His people.

The 6-minute song does not explicitly mention the outbreak of COVID-19 in Ethiopia. However, she tells God not to abandon His people. This is especially now when the world is “terrorized by bad news”.

The song has come just after the outbreak of COVID-19 in Ethiopia caused the government to declare a state of emergency.

Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed declared the state of emergency on April 8. It is expected to last up to September. During this time, all the land borders will remain closed. Public transport will also remain suspended.

With the declaration, the office of the Attorney General further clarified that the constitutional rights of Ethiopians are now suspended.

This is by far the most severe action Ethiopia has taken in a bid to curb the spread of COVID-19.

Not taking any chances

Notably, cases of COVID-19 in Ethiopia are not as many as in the neighboring countries.

For instance, Kenya – its southern neighbor, has more than 170 cases. It has recorded at least 6 deaths. Despite this, the country has only declared a localized cessation of movements in the most affected regions.

But the government of Ethiopia has said it will not take any chances hence the drastic measures.

By the time the national declaration was being made, regional governments had already made some moves.

For instance, the Tigray region even without having a confirmed case had declared a state of emergency. It also became the first region to have testing facilities outside of the federal facilities in Addis Ababa.

Other regions had also made moves by banning most forms of public transport. This was especially in the capital city which has the most cases of COVID-19 in Ethiopia.

As of April 9, Ethiopia had 55 confirmed cases of COVID-19. Four patients had recovered while two had died.

To motivate the health workers at the forefront of the fight against the virus, the government has promised them houses.

At least 645 of these are ready for handing over to the workers while another 600 are being prepared.

The government has also pledged to continually provide personal protective equipment. These are crucial in protecting the health workers from the virus while they attend the patients.

Domestic and gender-based violence

Reports from all over the world indicate that domestic and gender-based violence is on the rise during the COVID19 lockdowns.

To help mitigate such occurrences in Ethiopia, the Chief Justice, Meaza Ashenafi has said the courts will be ready to listen to such cases.

Before that, the outbreak of COVID-19 in Ethiopia had forced a partial closure on federal courts. Only cases treated as urgent were being heard.

But with the state of emergency, cases of domestic violence will be treated as urgent.



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