The Egyptian Ministry of Health announced on Tuesday that it recorded 14 deaths and 720 new infection cases of coronavirus, which is the worst daily number of infected people with the virus in the country. The rise in infection today in Egypt reached 35 per cent, compared to Monday when there were 535 infections. On the other hand, the ministry announced 302 recoveries, while the total number of the recovered people increased to 3,742.
According to the new figures, to date, the total number of infected cases of coronavirus in Egypt has reached 13,484; of these there have been 659 deaths and 3,742 cases of recovery. The increasing number of infections comes in conjunction with the Egyptian authorities’ refusal to impose a complete lockdown on the country to confront the virus. It also comes amid widespread scepticism that the true numbers of the infected are much greater than the reported figures, because the number of tests conducted by Egypt is very low. In mid-March, Canadian researchers estimated the actual numbers of people infected with the coronavirus at about 19,300, but the government denied these estimates.
Egyptians on social media shared the testimonies of many of those who had symptoms of coronavirus and went to the Abbasid Fever Hospital, but they were refused tests because they did not have the ability to carry out the polymerase chain reaction (PCR). One of the young men said on Facebook that he felt the symptoms of infection and repeatedly tried to call the announced numbers, but he did not receive an answer. He added that he had to leave his home at one in the morning when he could no longer bear the pain, and went to the hospital despite the curfew.
The young Egyptian recounted tragic conditions in the hospital, and said that the doctor performed a blood test and measured his temperature, and then told him that he is highly likely infected with the coronavirus. The young man said that the doctor told him that there were no tests available, and that there were often no places in quarantine. He pointed out that the doctor advised him to go back to my home, to eat foods rich in vitamin C, to avoid contact with any of his family, and to take analgesia medicine when necessary, and assured him that he is young and healthy, without chronic illnesses, and that he would survive.
These testimonies given by eyewitnesses indicate that there are large numbers of infected people who are not in quarantine. In the same context, the Egyptian government took precautionary measures to limit the spread of coronavirus during the Eid Al-Fitr period. The measures include increasing the daily curfew by four hours, stopping public transportation, and closing shops and public places.
Prime Minister Mustafa Madbouly announced the decisions that will be applied from next Sunday to Friday (May 29). Madbouly said that it was decided to extend the curfew date to start from five o’clock in the evening instead of nine in the evening, stop public transport, prevent large gatherings, close public places and all shops, stores, restaurants, beaches, parks, and recreational services from next Sunday to the end of the week.
The Egyptian Prime Minister stated that the Eid prayer will not be held in its usual collective form, but rather will be televised and broadcast from one mosque, after Al-Azhar authorised that prayers can be taken at home.Starting May 30, the procedures will return to the way they were before the week of Eid, with a night curfew from eight in the evening until six in the morning, according to Madbouly. He explained that the government aims to reach a state of coexistence with the virus, stressing that there are decisions to gradually return to work and resume recreational activities and religious services starting from mid-June, as long as strict precautions are taken.
The prime minister stated that wearing a mask will be imposed in public places, public transportation, and the subway, and the government will announce sanctions for those who do not wear it, indicating that the mask may be a reusable cloth and not a medical mask. Experts warn that the Egyptian regime’s procedures are not in line with the large increase in the number of official infections. Instead of tightening the procedures, the Egyptian regime is easing them.