Saturday, March 14, 2020

Coronavirus on the Nile : Egypt suspends study , the Coronavirus patients number jumps to 110 , Study suspended for 15 days and Matt Swider is on his way home “Updated”

There are huge developments in Egypt concerning the Coronavirus pandemic in the country.

First of Egypt’s ministry of health and World Health Organization announced Saturday evening that the number of Coronavirus patients in Egypt jumped into 110 after the registration of 17 new positive cases in the country officially.
According to the official statements, the 17 cases include 3 foreigners and 14 Egyptians.
A street in Alexandria's Sidi Bishr
street sensitized "Twitter"
The 14 Egyptians include an infected person who has returned from Saudi Arabia and another one from Emirates. It is worth mentioning that KSA suspended flights with Egypt and the UAE is said to stop issuing Visa for a couple of days according to travel agents in Egypt.

The statement added that the rest of the cases contracted the virus from previously announced cases.
We know according to official statements that among the new batch of patients,  students in 7 Egyptian schools in different areas including Zamalek, Cairo as in “City International School”, Giza, Alexandria and Sharkia.

There are some contradicting official statements concerning the students in the schools that contracted the virus. The minister of education Tarek Shawky stated earlier Saturday that there were "6 Children" that tested positive for Coronavirus in schools in "Giza, Alexandria and Sharkia" without giving further details.

On the other hand , Minister Hala Zayid on of health stated on TV that there are only "2 Children" that contracted the virus in two different schools and the "rest contracted the virus from previously registered cases".

She added that one of the patients was also a teacher and not a student.

This is the first time we know that there are confirmed and recognized cases in Alexandria and Sharkia.

So far Coronavirus has reported an outbreak in Luxor, Hurghada “Red Sea”, “Sidi Bishr” Alexandria, Zamalek and Heliopolis “Cairo”, Giza , Sharkia "Biblies: and Mansoura.
We know also two of the Egyptian cases are two ladies from Alexandria.

They contracted the virus from their brother who returned Egypt in a visit along with his Italian wife. Both their brother and their Italian sister-in-law were tested positive earlier for Coronavirus.

The two ladies live in Sidi Bishr district in Alexandria and the health directorate reportedly sensitized the streets there. They were transferred to the quarantine hospital in Alexandria, yes we are in the stage where local hospitals allocate a whole ward to quarantine Coronavirus patients if needed. 

From a couple of hours ago, Egypt’s Abdel Fattah El-Sisi issued a directive to suspend Study nationwide for two weeks “15 days” starting on Sunday, 15 March 2020

Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly held a press conference to declare more details about the directives of the President to suspend the study nationwide in schools and Universities.

There are 22 million students in schools and 3 million students in universities nationwide.

Minister Shawky was insisting that there was no need to suspend the study and that there was no Coronavirus outbreak in schools.

Now after the official announcement that there are cases in 7 schools in the country, there is a strong demand for his dismissal on social media. The hashtag “Dismissal of Tarek Shawky” in Arabic is top trending in Egypt on Saturday.
The cabinet presser "Egyptian Cabinet FB page" 
Egyptian President Abdel Fattah El-Sisi allocated LE 100 billion (USD 6 billion) to fund the state’s efforts to face Coronavirus. This is the biggest sum of money allocated in the history of Egypt to face a pandemic or a disease.

The Egyptian armed forces began to deploy units from the Chemical warfare to disinfect universities like Ain Shams University.

The government also issued directives to stop gatherings at tutor centers and I began to see reports about security campaigns forcing cafes to shut down earlier.

The ministry of religious endowment also issued decisions to suspend marriages in mosques. The Egyptian Coptic Orthodox Church also suspended its activities like trips and daycare centers as well as study in its theologic schools for two weeks. It added in its official statement that it would hold two masses per day to avoid large assemblies.

The religious Islamic moulids have been suspended as well.

It is expected that the Egyptian Football Association "EFA" to suspend the League matches on Sunday.

Saturday 14 March is the start of a new stage when it comes to Coronavirus pandemic in the valley of the Nile. It is another huge challenge, whether politically or socially or economically.

By the way, now I am finding tweets saying that there are Italian tourists in Sharm El-Sheikh who have extended their vacations refusing to return Italy. Needless to say, I began to see rumors about Coronavirus patients in South Sinai online in the same way.

Despite the decision to suspend study was demanded explicitly by parents and actually is the right decision by all measures, the panic level pumped to the ceiling in the WhatsApp groups if I may say especially Family groups and Mothers groups. Several friends report apocalyptic scenes at big supermarket chains like Souedi.

I guess many believe now that the fact the government declared the number jumped over 100 and there are 7 students in different areas infected and how the president ordered the study to be suspended that we are dealing with a catastrophe and the government is hiding something !!

I do not think that the government is hiding numbers because for real it can’t and the WHO is in the scene as we are dealing with a global pandemic. The WHO has already the ability and power to announce the right and correct numbers of patients if any government hides them.

I think instead that Coronavirus may have been in Egypt longer than we think and that we did not it was Corona. The Egyptians have been treating it as a tough common seasonal flu or cold commonly known in the Egyptian “Dor El Bard El-Shadeed”.

I got three people I know personally who suffered from symptoms similar to Coronavirus’s symptoms including fever and dry cough but they have recovered. Their ages are the late 30s to 60s. I have been reading similar accounts online in the past 4 hours.

On Friday

Egypt’s Ministry of Health announced on Friday that 13 new Coronavirus patients were discovered and confirmed in the country raising the total number of Coronavirus patients to 93 officially.

According to the statement issued by the MOH, the 13 new cases include 5 Egyptians and 8

Swider with the nurses and doctors of  Quarantine hospital "Matt Swider"
Swider with the nurses and doctors of
Quarantine hospital "Matt Swider"

There is nothing available about them from the MOH’s side except that the 13 cases contracted the virus from other cases that have been discovered before as the statement read.

I wish that the MOH publishes a breakdown of the nationalities that got Coronavirus in Egypt.
The MOH also announced that one case has left the quarantine hospital in Matrouh after it was confirmed that he fully recovered and thus the total fully recovered cases increased to 21 cases.

This case is none other than Tech Rader managing editor Matt Swider who is returning back to the United States tomorrow.

Swider is officially the most famous Coronavirus patient thanks to his social media presence as well as his interviews with the US press.

Here is the full MOH’s statement in Arabic.

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