Many countries around the world are highlighting the vital role that frontline health workers are playing in the fight against the coronavirus pandemic, putting their lives on the line to treat patients.
In many instances this is done without the necessary equipment to protect themselves, and has led to a high mortality rate among doctors and nurses at the forefront of the battle.
While this situation is improving in many countries, Kaizer Motoung, the chairman of South African giants Kaizer Chiefs, says it is vital that they receive the support they need and to stay the course in the fight.
“The situation that we are facing could’ve been worse if it were not for these workers who are selflessly rendering the essential services needed during this time,” Motoung said.
“The fight against Apartheid was a concerted effort by the organised formations from different affiliations. Covid-19 itself is a monumental task and only joint efforts will see us through.
“Therefore, it is of utmost importance that I encourage most especially the frontline services who have been called upon to risk their own lives, to keep on going strong and continue to do their best.
“Most importantly, to remain committed and dedicated to their calling. The country needs you more than ever before.”
Motoung also acknowledged the cost to the economy of a lockdown in South Africa that was eased to Level 4 on May 1, allowing some business to re-open.
“While we celebrate the workers that are rendering services at this juncture, Covid-19 has placed business under a tremendous strain. Many companies cannot cope and are forced into the unfortunate action of closing down or workforce reduction.
“I hope that this experience will lead to reassessing and restructuring of businesses which will eventually result in the staff rehiring in the future of those who have lost their jobs. Companies should use this time to reinvent their brand identities to try and maintain a certain level of sustainability during volatile times.
Finally, Motoung said he and his club are fully behind the health professionals and urged fans to play their part in slowing the spread of the virus.
“I pledge my support to the medical professionals and the entire staff members at the hospitals and various other health care facilities and the law enforcement brigade who continue to carry out their duties with honour and dignity.
“To Amakhosi and the people at large, let us do our part of saving lives by following the Government’s Covid-19 rules and regulations.”
Supporters should adhere to the guidelines laid out by the World Health Organisation in the bid to combat the coronavirus outbreak, which include:
Wash your hands frequently: Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water.
Maintain social distancing: Maintain at least 1 metre (3 feet) distance between yourself and anyone who is coughing or sneezing.
Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth: Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and can make you sick.
Practice respiratory hygiene: Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately
If you have fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early: Stay home if you feel unwell. If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention and call in advance. Follow the directions of your local health authority.