APS - 17 March 2020
ALGIERS- President of the Republic Abdelmadjid Tebboune, in an address to the nation over the country's current situation, said Tuesday the coronavirus pandemic is an issues of "national security" and "health safety," and the State is fully aware of the sensitive juncture and is concerned with the respect of freedoms and rights as much as it assumes its responsibly in protecting people and property.
"The State is strong and fully aware of the sensitive circumstances, is listening to the concerns of citizens and attaches importance to freedoms and rights as much as it assumes its responsibility in protecting people and property," President Tebboune said.
The State is responsible for the protection of people and properties, including health, and for providing the required medical care to citizens, given that the pandemic is a matter of national health security, even if it implies the temporary restriction of some freedoms as human life is above any other consideration," the president of the Republic stressed.
"Loyal State officials and executives and conscientious Algerians have, so far, managed to contain the level of the pandemic's spread to level 2 according to the standards of the World health organization (WHO)."
"Even if this pandemic would reach level 3, you should know that we have taken all necessary measures," the head of State added. "Our operational capacities are still intact and untapped at the level of the People's National Army and national police as well as economic spaces, like exhibition centers that may be rearranged to be used as isolation facilities, in addition to other public structures," he said.
Citing the available resources, President Tebboune disclosed that 1,550,000 masks of different types are available and 54 million others are in course of acquisition," in addition to "6,000 screening tests and 15,000 others in course of acquisition." President of the Republic said that "more than 2,500 of intensive care beds are available," a figure that will be increased if necessary to reach 6,000, in addition to 5.000 ventilators.
"However, the State cannot, alone, ward off the spread of this pandemic, if citizens do not fulfill their duty to protect themselves and do not scrupulously comply with hygiene rules and preventive measures decreed by the Ministry of Health, Population and Hospital Reform in collaboration with the National Commission chaired by the Prime Minister, "added the President of the Republic.
The National Commission chaired by the Premier is composed of the relevant ministries and the security services. "The State's efforts will remain limited, without the solidarity, discipline and understanding of the citizens, in particular through reporting suspicious cases so to reduce contamination risks," said Tebboune.
"Indeed, the pandemic is a source of concern for all, as it affects our way of life, our relationships and our movements, but particularly affects working mothers who are suffering from the closure of nurseries," he said. But "I assure you, it is not time to yield to alarmism or fear, the situation is under control and all the organs of the State are on high alert to face any unforeseen event."
Moreover, President Tebboune affirmed that "it is not necessary to rush to markets to buy and store the food products. One should not believe fake news and tendentious rumors. This is why I have given instructions to denounce and bring to justice the speculators and those behind these rumors."
President Tebboune also expressed gratitude to "the staff of the health sector, to the police and civil protection personnel and to the volunteer citizens and civil associations contributing to the fight against the pandemic and supporting affected people."