By Ed-Grant Ndoza – Mana.
Mzuzu Police and Social Welfare Office with funding from Plan Malawi through ‘Out of streets campaign’ have intensified efforts to move children away from Mzuzu City’s streets as a strategy of protecting them from contracting coronavirus.
The police are using road shows in all townships in the city as one of the communication strategies in reaching out to parents/ guardians and the children themselves.
Public Relations Officer (PRO) for Mzuzu Police, Inspector Edith Kachotsa said it is risky for children to be walking in the streets as they have no capacity to adhere to Covid-19 prevention measures.
“Children are potentially vulnerable to the virus because they cannot observe social/physical distancing when they are playing in groups and walking on the streets besides not adhering to hand washing with soap,” said Kachotsa.
She said children must not be left to roam about in the streets because they are not reasonable enough to exercise prevention measures at all times,”’ said Kachotsa.
Kachotsa added that police is urging parents and guardians to ensure that their children are always at home where they are provided with basic needs such as food and reading materials.
“Children should not be engaged in street vending, they should refrain from patronizing video showrooms as this can put them at risk of contracting the virus,” she said.
The District Social Welfare Officer (DSWO) for Mzimba North, Edward Chisanga said there is an increase of children on the streets of the city following school closure due to Covid-19.
“When schools were running, children, especially those in lower classes, were provided with porridge and spent reasonable time at school. Currently their only option is to go to the streets as they have nothing to do,” said Chisanga.