Editorial comment – Consideration for others

Ilisapeci Turagatogo, 48, (left) and Salote Balea sell ota at the Sawani border. Ota went for as low as $1 as farmers hurried for a quick sale. The sale of produce followed strict COVID-19 protocols that was monitored heavily by the police. Picture: JOVESA NAISUA

Health Ministry permanent secretary Dr James Fong said closed contained spaces always posed a problem.

He said this in the wake of growing concerns about breaches in the ministry’s COVID protocols.

This came after three of the ministry’s COVID-19 incident management team tested positive for COVID-19, leading to the standdown of all personnel operating from level 3 at its headquarters at Dinem House in Toorak, Suva.

Secondary contacts, including Dr Fong, Dr Aalisha Sahukhan, and Dr Jemesa Tudravu, are now working from home as a precautionary measure.

Dr Fong attributed the cases to limited space.

A ministry statement said the primary contacts of the three staff members had been identified and safely quarantined.

The services of the COVID-19 incident management team, it said, would continue with contingency plans activated.

The incident, hopefully, will attract the attention of every Fijian.

This should drive home the fact that the virus does not differentiate us.

There is no difference in status, ethnicity, religion or gender.

It will strike if we allow it to.

This incident should be a firm reminder for us all about the ability of the virus to spread quickly.

There are still Fijians disregarding simple rules.

There are Fijians who are still engaging in dangerous behaviour.

There are even Fijians crossing clearly marked containment zones, disregarding the law.

They will duck below police barriers and sneak into locked down areas.

This is a serious issue that we must address.

There are Fijians still joining social gatherings for alcohol and kava.

Police reports continue to give us stats that are worrying.

With the number of positive cases still on the rise, we are reminded about our responsibilities.

We are reminded about the need to be considerate.

Being told about the predicament thousands of families in affected zones are going through may not be pleasing to some of us.

It does provide a gloomy outlook.

However, it is important for us to always look around us, to remind ourselves of the plight of many of our fellow Fijians.

Many of them are staring at a blank wall.

Many of them don’t know when they will have their next meal.

They yearn for stability.

They want a semblance of order in their lives.

Their stories must be told.

It must be kept alive, to constantly serve as a reminder for us to do the right thing every day.

We must control the rise of our numbers, together.

This isn’t an easy thing to do considering the fact that we all have different views about life in general.

However, there has to be some consideration for our fellow Fijians who are suffering.

Hopefully we can find, and embrace the feeling of kindness and respect for one another that rests within us.

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