United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) has donated 90 smart phones and chargers to Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development to be used for receiving feedback from the community on issues regarding the COVID-19 pandemic.

Speaking on Monday during the donation of the gadgets worth K30 million in Lilongwe, Chief Community Development Officer of the organisation, Matteo Frontini said the gadgets are loaded with bundles and COVID-19 responses.

“53 phone gadgets will be distributed to frontline workers such as Health Surveillance Assistants (HSAs), Primary Education Advisors, Child Protection Workers and Community Development Assistants in 13 districts,” he said.

He explained that among the districts in the country to benefit from the donation include Blantyre, Mulanje, Mangochi, Ntcheu Dedza, Mwanza, Karonga, Chitipa, Zomba and Lilongwe.

Frontini said the districts were identified as high risk districts of COVID-19 as most of them are boarder and urban cities with high population.

In his remarks, Principal Secretary for the Ministry, Charles Kalemba thanked UNICEF for the donation, saying it would assist the ministry to provide necessary help to community members on COVID-19 response.

“Our Health Surveillance Assistants will interact with members of the community about COVID-19 and record requirements so that the ministry can intervene easily,” he said.

He assured the gadgets would enhance community feedback and information flow between the ministry and district councils, specifically to ensure that there is real time data on COVID-19 pandemic for the ministry.

Kalemba said the ministry will be able to send and receive feedback on COVID-19 to and from frontline staff as well as other stakeholders.

“The data which will be coming from the 35 local authorities will feed into the ministry dashboard,” he said.

-Manna-

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