COVID-19: Situation in the Democratic Republic of Congo and Position of the CDCC
Community of Disciples of Christ in Congo
Since the first case of COVID-19 had been identified in Kinshasa, the message has spread in the whole country but people were not very aware of what the situation had to become. From radio and social media, they already heard about it but they thought it was a Chinese disease. And when it touched DRC, some people claimed on streets that authorities were creating a situation in which they wanted to earn money from the International community.
Unfortunately, the first case is always identified when other contacts have already been infected. Then, other cases were reported and even death. Then, the population understood that it was also a local issue. It was time of fear and consciousness.
In a city like Kinshasa, infectious disease is more than a catastrophe. COVID-19 spread very fast that, from March 10th, the current situation reports 123 confirmed people and 11 dead (25 days later).
With such exponential growth, in order to prevent the rest of the population, the government took severe measures such as:
- Suspending public meetings: cultural events, church meetings including the Sunday services;
- Closing all the schools;
- Forbidding the funeral meetings in the temples as well as in families;
- Encourages people to maintain hygienic practices (washing hands with soap, not shaking each other hands, not touching mouth, eyes and nose especially after blowing one’s nose) ;
- Encourages people to stay at home and avoid direct contacts.
The problem is that, it is possible that these decisions and even the additional measure of isolating Kinshasa, closing frontiers and suspending travels (flights and shipping) have been taken after some other infected people had already gone in Provinces. It is the case of the Kivu where Bukavu City reports two confirmed cases and the North Kivu one case.
Position of CDCC:
In solidarity with all the CDCC partners, brothers and sisters:
- We are listening to Paul who says: “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be known to God; And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7);
- Then, we believe God will not abandon us because He says: “…Can a women forget her own baby and not love the child she bore? Even if a mother should forget her child, I will never forget you” (Isaiah49:15);
In this trust, despite the high risk the world is exposed to, and considering the local context of the equatorial forest, CDCC:
- Commits for campaigning against COVID-19 through community education on what is COVID-19, how to contaminate it, how to avoid it, what to do in case the community identifies a suspect case,…
- Is aware of the necessity of mobilizing necessary equipment and basic medicines for the community health stations,
- Fully supports the measures already fixed by the Government for more prevention.
Therefore, CDCC has established a multi-sectorial team to coordinate the church action against COVID-19. It is headed by Dr Bosolo (the Cordinator of Medical Department) and will have the charge of:
- Sensitizing the population of Equateur, Tshuapa and Maindombe using media and other means which limit interpersonal contacts,
- Promoting hygiene in the community health stations, and even educate population on hygienic issues in their living places;
- Equipping the community health stations in necessary materials and basic medicines,
- Providing special services to the confined population in Kinshasa.
Regarding the context, and the necessity of reaching all the corners of the church perimeter, CDCC intends working (if possible) in the following geographical areas:
- Area 1: Mbandaka (Mbandaka, Bolenge, Bikoro, Boyeka, Ingende, Lukolela, Dianga, Bolomba, Basankusu);
- Area 2: Basse-Tshuapa (Monieka, Eungu, Boende, Lofoyi, Wema, Wini, Befale, Djeera).
- Area 3: Haute-Tshuapa (Bokungu, Mondombe, Lokina, Lofoome, Ikela, Loombo, Opala),
- Area 4: Moboyo (Lotumbe, Mangilombe, Ifumo);
- Area 5: Kiri (Kiri and Inongo);
- Area 6: Kinshasa (Kinshasa, Kikwit, Matadi),
- Area 7: Ubangi (Bosobele, Ubangi).
CDCC trusts in God and believes that fighting together will be the solution against COVID-19.
Mbandaka, 02 April 2020.
On the behalf of CDCC,
Révérend ELIKI Bonanga
Président Communautaire et Représentant Légal de l’ECC/10-CDCC