State Counsellor reports on latest situations of COVID-19

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State Counsellor Daw Aung San Suu Kyi

I am profoundly grateful to all the people who made the elections a success in spite of the COVID disease. I want to begin this report by deeply honouring what you have done. During this election, we took great pains to make sure that the people could vote in safety with secure health arrangements. We think our efforts were worth it. This is because the people participated and voted enthusiastically. We were greatly encouraged by the news that the arrangements made were very systematic and very satisfactory. I should thank the UEC of course in the first instance for making this happen; next are the various departments who have supported the UEC. However, the people deserve to be thanked first; the people are top priority; “People are the key”. We cannot achieve anything successfully without the people. That is why it is because of the people that the elections were successful.
I know people want to talk only about the elections. However, as I am now speaking as chairperson of the National-Level Central Committee on Prevention, Control and Treatment of COVID-19, I will talk only about COVID-19. The UEC will talk about the elections at the appropriate time. We now have two challenges. One is to conduct the elections successfully, and the other is to overcome the COVID challenge successfully. When we look at these two, we have overcome the first one; to overcome the other one successfully, we will need your participation and support. We believe that we will be successful with the firm determination and the participation and support of the people. As you all know, during the past one or two week, the COVID-19 disease infection rate has not increased; it is steady. However, we need to work very hard for the infection rate to go down. For this also, we believe that we should all work hard together. With respect to this matter, we had to impose certain restrictions during the elections because of the COVID-19 disease. If this caused discomfort among the people, I would like to apologize. During the elections, everyone wanted to express themselves freely. They wanted to act this way also before the elections. Also, after the elections, they wanted to listen to the election results in big groups and large gatherings. Then they also wanted to discuss the elections. This is very natural. However, because of the needs of the health situation, we had to request the people not to gather in large groups. We are very grateful to the people because they listened to our request. Of course, there had been some gatherings of people. We had to look at this phenomenon as unavoidable. This came as no big surprise during the period of the elections. One more thing is that I want to apologize to the people who could not cast their votes due to COVID-19 restrictions. For example, we could not make arrangements for people under quarantine to vote or for those who were taken to the hospitals just one or two days ahead of the elections. Moreover, I also learnt that the drivers who were stranded in Muse got upset because they could not vote. I am really sorry to hear this. We could not make arrangements for their voting due to travel restrictions at the moment. However, we could overcome challenges for the elections in line with the healthcare rules.
The government will put emphasis on overcoming the COVID-19 in the coming days as it is required to do so. I have frequently said that it is expected that a vaccine will appear soon. However, we need to be very vigilant during this period. Only then will we be able to overcome this challenge. I believe people would be very interested to know how to overcome economic challenges during the post-COVID-19 period. We will start to provide relief assistance to the people at grassroots level beginning this week. We had to delay this programme although we were ready to do it due to the election processes in the previous weeks. Therefore, the fourth relief supplies will start this week. In addition, we have plans for sustaining and recovery of the economy in the post-COVID-19 in coordination with the people. I am also optimistic about it. When we looked at the data, it was found that the death rate of confirmed cases is not increasing, even decreasing to a certain point, at present. Therefore, I want the people to take care of their health so that they have strong immune systems. I am sure the people know already that having fundamental good health could help in overcoming COVID-19. Many countries are experiencing repeated waves of the pandemic. It may be said that the pandemic is still not under control at the global level. Public participation played a crucial role in the containment of disease in our country. Otherwise, we could not achieve any success without the efforts and involvement of the people. I feel so bad about having to say these things because people want to discuss the elections. Actually, I have to say these things because of my responsibility. The topic of elections will be discussed by the persons concerned. So, I want to conclude today’s report as briefly as possible. I wish to pray for the good health and well-being of all our people who have all shown their sense of duty in an awesome way. (Translated by Kyaw Myaing, Aung Khin)

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