President Salva Kiir of South Sudan has carped at claims suggesting he was taken ill with the novel coronavirus, dismissing the rumour as malicious propaganda.Tearing into widespread reports about him being flown abroad for treatment, President Kiir said such speculations were benign distractions which detract from the crusade against the virus.
He said South Sudan would be far better off exerting her energies on ways and means of banishing “this unforgiving monster in the room”.
The South Sudanese leader said Covid-19 is no respecter of religious orientations or tribal lineages and should therefore be fought without let or hindrance.
“The public should not delve into propaganda,” Kiir advised as he gave an update of coronavirus cases in his country on Monday.
South Sudan has 600 cases of the virus.
President Kiir’s denial comes a week after his vice president Riek Machar confirmed contracting the virus with nine other cabinet ministers including his wife Angelina Teny and bodyguards.
They are all under self-quarantine while receiving treatment.
President Kiir shares the fear of international humanitarian aid agencies active in the country that more cases of the disease could overwhelm the country’s fledgling health system already under pressure from years of instability.