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Chinese Ambassador says students are stuck

Chinese Ambassador says students are stuck

Niël Terblanché

YIMING Zhang, the Chinese Ambassador to Namibia said in a statement on his social media pages that Namibian students currently in the Hubei province where the outbreak of the deadly Coronavirus first strated will have to remain in China until such time as quarantine measures has been lifted.


In his statement the Yiming said that the embassy has received phone calls from concerned Namibian parents whose children are studying in China, particularly in Hubei province. He added that the parents are worried about their children’s safety and health in China, and wish their children to return home.


“As far as we know, all schools in Hubei have adopted strict and meticulous measures to contain the epidemic and have established special working groups to take care of international students, including distribution of epidemic prevention materials, free delivery of meals for international students and helping them purchase goods on shopping lists they provide. About 41 universities and colleges in Hubei have opened 24 hour hotlines for international students,” Yiming said.


Chinese Ambassador students Namibia Hubei province
Pictured: The Chinese Ambassador to Namibia, Yiming Zhang. – Photo: Contributed


He said with regards to the question raised by these parents about whether students should be evacuated from Wuhan at this time that they will have to remain there until the quarantine has been lifted.


“Due to the need for epidemic containment, air, railway and road links to Wuhan have been cut off and according to the World Health Organisation experts’ assessment the best way at present is to stay in Wuhan instead of rushing to be transferred out of the city, because it will add to more uncertainties.”


In the meantime doctors in China has adopted a new way of diagnosing the novel coronavirus, leading to a huge jump in the official number of deaths blamed on the disease and the number of confirmed cases in the country. Officials in Hubei reported 254 new deaths and 15 152 new cases.


Chinese doctors now use lung imaging to diagnose the disease caused by the virus, in addition to the standard nucleic acid tests they had been using.


The sharp increase brought the worldwide death toll to at least 1 370, including Japan’s first fatal case. The number of confirmed cases around the world already stood at more than 60 000.


Only about 400 of those patients, and just three of the confirmed fatalities, have been outside mainland China.


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in the United States of America confirmed 15 instances of infection with the deadly virus now referred to as COVID-19.