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Around The Country: Updates From Six Counties – July 10, 2020

Stay informed with happenings in your county, follow LocalVoicesLiberia every week day for the latest update on COVID-19 and other important developments.

Bong County: Phebe Hospital Still Closed

Phebe Hospital has been closed since June 26 after the Medical Director of the hospital, Dr. Jefferson Sibley  and several other nurses tested positive for COVID-19

Phebe Hospital in Suakoko District, Bong County is to remain closed until the County Treatment Unit (CTU) is ready to care for COVID-19 patients in the county, according to Samuel Kplaiwru, the hospital’s Communications Director.

Phebe Hospital, a major referral health facility in central Liberia, was temporarily shut down on June 26 for 72 hours based on advice from Liberia’s COVID-19 Incident Management System headed by Dr. Samson Arzoaquoio. The decision was made after a handful of confirmed coronavirus cases were recorded there.

It was intended to disinfect the building; however, it has been more than two weeks since the health facility was closed to the public.

On Thursday, Mr. Kplaiwru said all the positive COVID-19 cases in the county are being isolated in a section of the  Hospital – where they are undergoing treatments.

“You’re aware that the hospital got contaminated after our Medical Director of the hospital, Dr. Jefferson Sibley including several other nurses at the hospital tested positive for the virus. And for it to be decontaminated, the entire facility needs to be sprayed [disinfected] before it can cater to patients (non-coronavirus patients),” he said.

He added that when the county’s CTU is fully ready to accept COVID-19 patients then all COVID-19 patients will be transferred, allowing the hospital to be fully “decontaminated” and begin providing health services for other patients.

Meanwhile, Kpaiwru has called on people of the county to not panic as health authorities are doing all they can to get the hospital reopen to the public.

Grand Bassa County: Police Enforce Mask Wearing

Police in Buchanan have been enforcing the use of nose and mouth mask since the start of this week | Photo By: Elton Wrionbee Tiah

The Liberia National Police Grand Bassa County detachment has begun enforcing the compulsory wearing of mask in the public in Buchanan city.

On Thursday, police officers were seen at major entrances into the port city instructing motorcycle riders and vehicles owners to wear nose and mouth covering before they could cross the checkpoints.

The police were also seen ordering passengers on motorbike to wear mask. Several motorcycle riders were parked due to their unwillingness to follow the health protocols.

Lofa County: Flood Leaves Scores Homeless

The Thursday afternoon rain lasted for more than four hours and left scores of families homeless. The scale of the damage the flood has caused is still being assessed by local authorities | Photo By: Arthur Kowah

A torrential downpour of rain on Thursday afternoon, July 9 in Voinjama has left several families homeless. Some of the communities affected are Kolahun Parking, Market Ground, Telbomai and Police- By-pass, among others.

The heavy rain started at about 2:30 PM and continued until almost it was 6 pm. There were no human casualties reported but affected families have reported that their properties were damaged, and several valuables were lost.

The scale of the damage caused by the flood is still being assessed.

Affected families, who are currently in the homes of friendly neighbors and family members, are calling on government and humanitarian individuals and institutions to come to their aid.

Maryland County: Local Bar Fined for Breaching Health Regulations

Despite the surge in coronavirus cases in the county, several persons are not adhering to health measures aimed at minimizing the spread of the virus.

Several entertainments centers in Pleebo Maryland County are said to be opened at night, causing large number of people to gather – a violation of the social distancing regulation sanctioned by the government.

Consequently, the Joint Security has fined owners of several bars in Pleebo for violating the health protocols and the state of emergency. Each business that reportedly violated the SOE is now required to pay US$50 or its Liberian dollars equivalent into government revenue, the county’s Joint Security said in a statement.

Meanwhile, the County Health Officer, Dr. Methodius George, has announced five new confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the county, putting the county’s total at 17.

Police Launch Road Safety Regulation

At the same time, the Traffic Division of Maryland County Police Detachment has launched a road safety regulation exercise in Bahraykehn Town, Pleebo Sodekehn District.

The town, which lies along Harper-Pleebo highway, usually hosts a traditional weekly market day on Tuesdays. The market attracts hundreds of marketers and customers who are often seen selling or standing along the road – a situation that pose high risk of a fatal motor accident.

Moses Toe, the Traffic Commander of the Police detachment, told LocalVoicesLiberia that the road safety exercise will regulate the flow of traffic and movement of people along the highway every Tuesday market day when hundreds of people converged to sell or buy.

Meanwhile, he added that the Police is working with the local Motorcycle Union to enforce the COVID-19 health regulations.

Grand Gedeh County: COVID-19 Community Awareness 

Liberia Crusaders for Peace has extended its public awareness campaign about COVID-19 to Grand Gedeh County.

Oliver G. Cheah, the groups’ supervisor, said the organization has conducted training for over 60 community members on the prevention of COVID-19.

He said those community members trained are in the various communities of Zwedru carrying out public awareness about the pandemic.

“Early part of this week, we conducted a one day training-of-trainers [workshop] in collaboration with the county health team, especially with the risk communication pillars ,for the community people [for them] to tell their own people about the quick spread of this virus,” Cheah said.

“We taught them the proper usage of nose masks and hands washing, signs and symptoms of the virus, and [about] reporting sick person in the community”.

He added that more than 10 communities of Zwedru, 36 communities of other parts of the county are receiving prevention awareness messages while the remaining communities will soon be targeted when the organization gets additional funding from partners.


Local Voices Liberia is a network of dedicated Liberian journalists based in the 15 counties working to lift the development concerns and progress of rural communities.



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