Orealla/Siparuta cases still on the rise
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– lockdown may be extended if residents don’t adhere to guidelines

By Vishani Ragobeer

THERE have been 95 cases recorded so far in the indigenous communities of Orealla and Siparuta, in East Berbice, Corentyne, according to the Toshao, Carl Peneux.

Of the 95 cases, 62 positive cases were recorded in Siparuta while Orealla recorded 33 positive cases. A surge in the number of cases in the two villages caused a two-week lockdown to be imposed, beginning from Friday last. Earlier this month, an elderly man, who was infected with the coronavirus, died after he reportedly had a stroke.

This number, the Toshao said, on Sunday, is expected to rise in the coming days as mass testing was done and the results are being released in clusters.

During an interview with the Guyana Chronicle, Peneux said that most persons are asymptomatic and are allowed to isolate at home. There were two men who showed symptoms, but the Toshao said they are “coming around.”

According to Sunday’s national COVID-19 dashboard, Region Six (East Berbice-Corentyne) has 230 positive cases thus far. This means that Orealla and Siparuta account for approximately 41.3 per cent of the cases in the region.

On Friday last, the decision was taken to shut down the villages for two weeks and let law enforcement deal with residents who refuse to adhere to the numerous warnings.

Even with this measure in place, however, Peneux lamented that some persons are not adhering to the COVID-19 guidelines.

“We’re hoping that the police presence here would help us to enforce those restrictions, and apprehend those persons who are violating the restrictions,” the Toshao said, emphasising, “everybody should be staying home and they should only be outside if they have a good reason to come outside.”

Peneux warned that if COVID-19 guidelines are not being followed, and residents do not cooperate with the measures, a decision to extend the lockdown by another week will be taken.

He also said that travel is restricted between Orealla and Siparuta to Corriverton, and between Orealla and Siparuta.

Few persons “with really good reasons” were allowed to travel, but those persons had to take a COVID-19 test.

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