Announcing general holiday instead of lockdown was a big mistake: Fakhrul

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2020-05-28 04:30:46 BdST


The government made a “big mistake” using the words “general holiday” instead of “lockdown” to contain the coronavirus outbreak, according to Mirza Fakhrul Islam Alamgir.

The announcement put the public in the “holiday mood” leading to the rise in number of patients and deaths, the BNP Secretary General told a virtual press briefing on Wednesday.

The government has failed to grasp the magnitude of the coronavirus crisis and tried to show that the situation was under its control by avoiding the word “lockdown”, Mirza Fakhrul alleged.

The people began heading out to Cox’s Bazar and Sylhet as tourists or to meet their relatives when the government ordered members of the public to stay at home bu clamping the shutdown in the form of a “general holiday”.

“They [government] are inexperienced and careless. They tried to send out the message that Bangladesh wasn’t in trouble,” he said.

The country registered 22 new fatalities from the novel coronavirus in a daily count, bringing the death toll to 544. The tally of infections soared to 38,292 after 1,541 COVID-19 cases were detected in the 24 hours on Wednesday, according to the health directorate.

“The number of virus cases would have been much less if the government announced a lockdown instead of “general holiday”,” he said.

Mirza Fakhril said it is difficult to tackle an outbreak in Bangladesh without enforcing strict lockdown measures as it is a densely populated country. “The countries that are reopening businesses took the decision after a three-month long lockdown.”