OSESG-Burundi joins fight to rein in COVID-19

From home, OSESG-B staff on self-quarantine join colleagues in weekly COVID-19 briefing via VCT, 18 March 2020. Photo: UN/Napoleon Viban

18 Mar 2020

OSESG-Burundi joins fight to rein in COVID-19

Like elsewhere in the UN system worldwide, staff of the Office of the Special Envoy of the Secretary General for Burundi (OSESG-B) are currently on full alert against the marauding Corona virus.

Three months into the outbreak no case of the virus has been reported in Burundi, but OSESG-B is leaving nothing to chance. In synch with the UN Headquarters, staff of the office along with colleagues of the UN Country Team have been fully mobilised and sensitised on preventive hygiene and protocols as outlined by the World Health Organisation (WHO).

At weekly townhalls, a taskforce led by the Head of Office updates staff on the situation in Burundi as well as trends in the evolution of the pandemic.

To ensure uniformity and consistency, all messaging on the disease draw from directives handed down by WHO. And staff apart, the Office also reaches out to the host population with information and education on COVID19 via social media.

The mobilisation is general and the effort collective, as OSESG-B and the UN Country Team join forces with the authorities in Burundi to fend off the virus, which now lurks in neighbouring Rwanda, Tanzania and DR Congo.

Among other precautionary measures, the government currently quarantines persons coming in from some 34 highly affected countries for a period two weeks. Similarly, OSESG-B envisages staff telecommuting from home, if push came to shove. The idea is to enforce social distancing with a view to breaking the chain of transmission in the pandemic.


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