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COVID-19

Panic buying was “stupidity” and not my fault says Doctor Fong

May 12, 2021 4:46 am

The panic buying at supermarkets yesterday afternoon has been branded as “stupidity” by Health Permanent Secretary, Doctor James Fong.

Following the news that Hansons and Shop and Save in Makoi had been shut down together with Extra Supermarket in Suva, long queues were seen outside other supermarkets in Suva and Nasinu.

This was something that also was sparked by rumors on social media that there was a potential lockdown on the cards as early as yesterday.

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An irked Doctor Fong says if they were to take the lockdown route, ample notice will be given, which will be not hours, but days, to prepare and for government to allocate resources appropriately.

“Now I want you to hear me very carefully, because I think there is a lot of stupidity that is happening out there in the community in regards to panic buying. In that event, our priority is on locking down the virus in the active fashion I spoke on yesterday. For the lockdown to be decisive, it must be well-planned and prolonged enough to last for the entire incubation period”.

Following this, Doctor Fong, again took a swipe at those who had suggested that his and the ministry’s actions led to the panic buying.

“I want to also make sure that everybody is clear that I was not responsible for the panic buying that happened today. That was not from me.”

Doctor Fong says based on the worrying rise of clusters and cases, he has been working with other permanent secretaries, as well as the private sector, on scenario-planning based on the results of our continuous testing, which includes the possibility of a full lockdown of Viti Levu.

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