Lockdowns won’t solve the problem, fresh strategies needed, pronto!

‘SHOULD Selangor go into a total lockdown to control the spread of COVID-19 in the state?’ seems to be the question on many people’s minds in the past few days.

This is following the Health Ministry’s announcement earlier this week that it may push for a lockdown of the country’s most industrialised state if current coronavirus curbs prove unsuccessful in reining in a spike of new cases.

Also, crucial to point out is the fact that Selangor has been reporting the highest number of new confirmed COVID-19 cases for the past few weeks, if not months. Most recently, the state reported a whopping 2,251 new cases, lifting the cumulative number to 159,307.

Many experts have backed the decision, saying that a full lockdown – similar to the first movement control order – may be the way to curb further spread of the coronavirus.

The many healthcare facilities in Selangor are in danger of being overwhelmed, and with many Government hospitals running out of beds at intensive care units (ICUs) to treat COVID-19 patients as the number of people falling critically ill from the virus escalates, a full lockdown in the state is necessary, they claimed.

However, the decision is, unfortunately, not an easy one to make. Any decision towards this end must take into consideration, first and foremost, the interest of business and the preservation of livelihoods.

If a total lockdown is indeed in the cards for Selangor, there is no doubt that it would impact the already hard-hit local economy and lead to far-reaching repercussions for businesses in the country.

A total lockdown, suffice to say, would mean higher income loss and thus, more widespread poverty due to business closures and the retrenchment of employees.

Furthermore, various news reports revealed that as of 1Q2021, the country is on the right trajectory for economic recovery, and another lockdown will threaten this positive momentum and negatively impact investment sentiments in the long run.

How will the state and federal governments recover from the devastating consequences, then?

Ultimately, lockdowns won’t solve the problems – they delay it. The onus is therefore on the federal government to come up with new strategies to fight the pandemic.

Taking into consideration the current state of the country’s economy, a blanket lockdown is not the best solution to the problem. – May 20, 2021

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