Amid Discovery of the Omicron Variant in the Country
By Ndey Sowe
Project Aid The Gambia, an international NGO based in the country, has handed over four thousand (4,000) protective FFP2 face masks on Thursday, 13 January to the following institutions: GRA, GPA, the Gambia Police Force, the department of Immigration and the Ministry of Health, as a protective measure against the Omicron variant of Covid-19, which has been recently discovered in the country. The handing over ceremony was held at the Project Aid head office in Kotu.
As these institutions work in close interaction with people on a daily basis, this consignment of the FFP2 protective facemask is believed to go a long way in mitigating the spread of the Omicron virus.
Malik Jones, Public Relation Officer (PRO) of Project Aid-The Gambia, said the donation is highly necessary because they are professional facemasks which is given to key institutions that interact with people in their daily work.
“We decided that key institutions like these should be the beneficiaries alongside the Ministry of Health. These are people who are in close contact with the public all the time,” Mr Jones said, adding they do not want to take chances with the Omicron virus, which is spreading gradually. Mr. Jones advised that precaution is better at all times.
Matthias Kettler, the Project Director for Project Aid-The Gambia, said for protection from the Omicron virus is to wear facemasks of good quality like the one they are donating to these institutions.
“The face masks are produced in Germany and this is the first consignment we got which is 4,000 masks. There is a container coming and they are also masks from Germany. I think in the next four months, more than one hundred thousand masks will arrive Gambia,” he said.
Charles Abdoulaye Mbye, the local Chairperson for Project Aid-The Gambia, asserted that these are better and protected masks than the ones used by some people.
“This is meant for big institutions where you have a lot of engagement and interaction with the public,” Mbye said, indicating the donation is a significant one and hopes that the beneficiaries will ensure its proper use.
Bai Cham, Assistant Safety Manager at the Gambia Ports Authority who is also one of the beneficiaries, thanked Project Aid for the gesture and said Government cannot do it alone.
Cham said the importance of donating these types of facemasks to these institutions in mitigating the omicron virus, cannot be over emphasised. He promises that the masks will be put into good use in helping combat the deadly virus.