File Photo: Members of the Egyptian parliament attend the opening session at the main headquarters of Parliament in Cairo, Egypt (Photo: Reuters)
A statement issued by Egypt's parliament on Friday evening said that it is closely following the situation of the coronavirus in the country and the preventative measures that have so far been taken by the government to contain it.
The statement said parliament speaker Ali Abdel-Aal is in constant communication with the government and all relevant authorities to make sure that the coronavirus is still under control and whether the current precautionary measures are still enough to contain its spread.
In light of the above, speaker Abdel-Aal has directed the chairs of parliament's committees, each in its own field, to avoid holding meetings as much as possible in line with the precautionary measures that were taken to contain the spread of the virus.
"Chairs of the committees, however, will be required to study all the complaints sent by ordinary citizens and MPs, as well as proposals suggested to help citizens who have been seriously affected by the precautionary measures, particularly seasonal workers," said the statement, adding that the "chairs of parliament's committees will also submit weekly and periodic reports to the speaker on the recommendations that should be taken in this respect."
The statement indicated that the chairs of parliament's committees will also be required to stay in direct contact with Minister of Parliamentary Affairs Alaa Fouad and other cabinet ministers to make sure that the government is keen on implementing all the recommendations proposed by parliament to contain the coronavirus and help poor citizens negatively affected by the measures taken to contain it.
The statement said speaker Abdel-Aal is also in personal contact with the cabinet to follow up on the current situation regarding the coronavirus.
"In this respect, the speaker expresses his deep thanks for the measures that have so far been taken and declares his support for the medical teams who are working day and night to contain the virus which has infected the majority of the world’s countries," said the statement, adding that "parliament also expresses thanks to President Abdel-Fatah El-Sisi for raising bonuses given to doctors, nurses, ambulance workers, and administrative officials."
In light of the above, the statement said parliament urges all Egyptians to have a high sense of responsibility and strictly abide by all health instructions and precautionary measures such as social distancing and staying at home as much as possible.
"We all should take the matter very seriously because we are all in one boat, and success in winning the war against this dangerous coronavirus will largely depend on our personal and collective discipline, and every citizen should know that each has a role to play in containing the spread of the virus," said the statement, also urging citizens not to give an ear to rumours and rationalise the use of medical resources.
"This is quite necessary so that the state does not resort to taking additional measures to prevent an outbreak of the virus in Egypt," said the statement.