Controller Manning cautions students on dangers of COVID-19 as academic year begins

Monday 1 February 2021

The Controller of the National Pandemic Response, David Manning has cautioned students and academic staff in all institutions in the country to be wary of the dangers of Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) as the academic year begins.

Mr Manning  has repeatedly urged both students and staff to  be mindful of the threat of the COVID-19 virus especially at this time, when students are expected to move into school premises for registration to begin classes.

“Institutions must enforce wearing of masks, social distancing and regular washing of hands to avoid the possible outbreak of the virus among the student population in respective institutions.

“Institutions must also ensure proper hand washing facilities are built in schools for students and staff to use.”

He further  urged  everyone to adopt to measures in the new normal such as:

  1. Regular washing or sanitising of hands. Wash with soap and water or use an alcohol based sanitizer;
  2. Keep a physical distance of at least 1.5 meters between yourself and others;
  3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth;
  4. Greet others with a smile, a nod or a simple hello-no handshakes, no fist bumps and no high fives;
  5. Cough and sneeze in your bent elbow and not your hands;
  6. Limit social gathering and time spent in crowded places;
  7. Wear a face mask or face covering in all public places to protect yourself and others; and
  8. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

In the meantime,  the country’s COVID-19 cases stand  at 867 with nine known deaths.

He added that a total of 42,789 people have tested for COVID-19, with 828   people having been  recovered whilst 104 samples  still  pending at the laboratories, and a further 30  active cases are in isolation.

Sixteen provinces including the Autonomous Region of Bougainville (AROB) have reported cases, thus far:  The distribution of the cases is as follows:

Provinces               Confirmed Cases

NCD                           368

Western Province      214

West New Britain       179

East New Britain          30

New Ireland                  21

Eastern Highlands       13

Western Highlands      10

Central                          10

Morobe                            9

East Sepik                      3

Enga                             3

Milne Bay                      2

West Sepik                    2

Southern Highlands     1

AROB                           1

Hela Province                1

TOTAL                        867

Globally, the total confirmed cases of COVID-19 has reached 102,083,344 including 501,930 new cases reported in the last 24 hours.  The death toll is 2,209,195 of which 11,986 were reported in the last 24 hours.


Media contact: Chief Superintendent Dominic D. Kakas, BEM, DPS
COVID-19 Media & Public Information Joint Agency Task Force
Mobile: 75430557 email:
Police email:          
COVID-19 JATF email:

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