Since the COVID-19 outbreak began in Myanmar, the Union Government has pledged that it would leave no stone unturned in fighting the disease and no one would be left behind in response to the global pandemic.
Especially, the needs of vulnerable communities such as displaced people have been given priority in response to the pandemic.
The government’s policy: “No one would be left behind,” means that women, children and vulnerable communities would also receive assistance from the government’s COVID-19 Economic Relief Plan-CERP.
The Union Government is implementing a plan to prevent, contain and respond to the COVID-19 disease in IDP camps by spending K2.1 billion in efforts to provide care to the people displaced by armed conflicts and terrorist attacks.
The second wave of COVID-19 broke out in the second week of August in Rakhine and the authorities imposed restrictions on travel and stay-at-home orders in eight townships in Rakhine State in response to the second wave of COVID-19. Understanding that it not easy for the IDPs to follow the rules and guidelines issued by the Ministry of Health and Sports for the disease unless they are provided with sufficient basic daily needs such as water, soap and food, the Union Government and the World Food Programme are providing humanitarian aid to the IDPs.
Despite limitations caused by the global pandemic, the Union Government is making efforts for resettlement of IDPs and closing of IDP camps nationwide.
Since the second wave in Rakhine State, the authorities have enforced rules at the camps to ensure that they do not go to a neighbouring country of their own volition and the IDPs understand that they would face legal action if they do not abide by orders and do not comply with mandatory COVID-19 regulations. Similarly, those who illegally return from neighbouring countries and enter an IDP camp would face legal action under the communicable diseases law.
The current COVID-19 pandemic is our latest wake-up call for greater cooperation and solidarity among the government, INGOs and people to address the economic and social repercussions for the livelihood of the people.