Maldives may impose second COVID-19 lockdown: president

Maldives may enforce a second lockdown to bring a second wave of COVID-19 infections under control, local media citing President Ibrahim Solih reported here Sunday.

President Solih has said that while a lockdown may have adverse effects for citizens and the economy, the government would enforce one if the current trend of COVID-19 infections continues, echoing warnings from the Health Emergency Operation Center (HEOC).

Maldives is currently experiencing a second wave of COVID-19 infections since initial restrictions were eased in July. The country has been experiencing a high rate of infections per day this month, the majority of which have been of local citizens.

On Saturday 109 new cases of COVID-19 were confirmed in Maldives, including those of 80 locals and 29 foreign nationals, bringing the country’s total case count up to 7,578. Meanwhile, 4,925 people have fully recovered from the virus, while 28 have died so far.

Dr. Ahmed Shaheed of the HEOC’s Technical Advisory Group said that the country’s scoring system for COVID-19, which examines factors including the time taken for cases to double and the weekly death rate, currently stands at a risky nine out of ten.

If the score rises to 10, a lockdown will have to be reinforced, Dr. Shaheed was quoted as saying by state media.