JAPANESE Ambassador Ryuta Mizuuchi has urged the Zambian government to hold more frequent COVID-19 updates as his embassy relies on accurate information from the briefings which he sends to his country.
And Government has hailed the cordial and long standing relations between Zambia and Japan.
According to a statement issued by the Ministry of Information public relations unit, Tuesday, the Japanese Ambassador said this when he called on Chief Government Spokesperson Dora Siliya yesterday.
Ambassador Mizuuchi said Japan was impressed with the transparent manner in which Zambia was managing COVID-19 information.
He said Zambia had been outstanding in providing COVID-19 information to members of the public.
“My Government and indeed myself are very much impressed with the Zambian Government’s performance on COVID-19 updates,” said Ambassador Mizuuchi, who was flanked by second secretary for economics Soma Minami.
The Ambassador, however, requested the Zambian Government to consider holding COVID-19 media updates more frequently.
He said the Japanese Embassy relied on the accurate information from the COVID-19 briefings to update the Japanese Government and its citizens, who were repatriated to Japan when the COVID-19 pandemic began.
And Siliya said the Zambian government appreciates the assistance that the Japanese Government continues to render to it in many sectors.
Siliya, who is also Minister of Information, said government is keen to sustain the warm relations which exist between Zambia and Japan for the mutual benefit of the two countries.
She also said government was eager to further deepen cooperation between Japan and Zambia in the Information and Broadcasting and tourism sectors.
“We want to see how we can support the media in documentary making as well as other areas so that we can enhance the dissemination of information to the people. The entertainment industry is another area which Government wants to support. Currently the industry lacks the necessary tools to take information out there. We have seen the great things which Japan has been able to achieve through disseminating information to its citizens. We want to collaborate and learn from Japan,” said Siliya, who was flanked by Information Permanent Secretary Amos Malupenga.
Siliya said government was working hard to ensure that all members of the public were not left behind in accessing correct information on COVID-19.
She said the council of Ministers headed by the Vice-President would soon meet to discuss the need to carry out an assessment to ascertain the status of the pandemic.
Siliya said part of the assessment would be aimed at understanding science findings that suggest that the Coronavirus spreads more rapidly in the cold season.
Meanwhile, Siliya said government has already put in place a plan which would guide on how to escalate or de-escalate interventions in response to the prevailing situation.
The Minister also commended the media for their role in sharing COVID-19 information to the public.
Siliya further called on the public to be cautious and follow the advice from the health experts saying the wave of the Covid-19 pandemic might not disappear quickly.