Today: Tuesday, 24 November 2020 year

Tunisia to cut public sector work hours due to corona

Tunisia to cut public sector work hours due to corona

The Tunisian health authorities have warned that many infections rises. The logical decision to ban the gatherings and to cut public sector hours could help to stop the rapid spread of the coronavirus, prime minister Hichem Mechichi said on Saturday.

The governmental decision was taken as fears grew that hospitals in the country will be unable to cope with a high number of patients because of the shortage of beds in intensive care units (ICUs).

Tunisian authorities will ban all gatherings and reduce working hours for employees in the public sector to stop the unexpected rises of the corona. As the health experts say, the COVID-19 cases have been increasing sharply since the North African nation reopened its borders in late June.

As of Saturday, the number of infections has jumped to more than 20,000 compared with about 1,000 cases before the Tunisian borders were reopened following a few months of lockdown.

Tunisia’s governors to introduce regional lockdowns if necessary

In a speech announcing the latest measures to combat the virus, prime minister Mechichi said he gave orders to Tunisia’s governors to introduce regional lockdowns if the situation is getting worse.

On Friday, the country’s health ministry announced there were 1,308 new coronavirus cases since Wednesday, a record since the start of the pandemic, prompting the government to impose night-time travel restrictions in two governorates.

The new restrictions, in Sousse and Monastir, were designed to curb the increase in COVID-19. However, PM stressed it was unthinkable to reimpose a nationwide lockdown because of the economic collapse caused by the first lockdown in March.

Tunisia’s tourism-dependent economy shrank 21.6 per cent in the second quarter compared with the same period last year as a result of the pandemic and measures to curb it.