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As the Covid-19 pandemic continues to spread, we spoke with the Managing Director at Pyramid Temi Group’s local partner company in the Lebanon to understand more about the current situation and which issues will become the most critical over the coming months.
Q: How is the population reacting to the spread of the virus?
A: Almost all civilians are abiding by the Government’s orders to stay in their homes and work remotely from there. However, a few days ago Riots re-emerged due to the losses of the Lebanese Pound against the United States Dollar.
Q: Which system has been adopted by the provincial government?
A: I would say that it is in many ways similar to the system adopted in the UK.
Q: Would you agree that no one/single suits all and thus individual governments must devise their own specific strategies? Which factors define your country?
A: The Chinese decision to implement a total lock down on the nation thus preventing an uncontrolled spread of the Covid-19 virus fits well with the Lebanese culture.
Q: How are people reacting to your government’s choice?
A: People are reacting positively and believe that it was the best decision to quarantine the whole nation. However, currently a part of those that are on the breach of poverty are back on the streets rioting again.
Q: Are people following government instructions?
A: Almost all are abiding the government instructions.
Q: Please describe how the private sector is being affected by the present status.
A: The private sector is suffering considerably from the consequences of the current situation. A lot of work has almost come to a stop and only the minimum is being done. Movements are limited to the absolute minimum and many in the private sector have started adapting having employees work remotely from their homes. Another strategy is rotation where only one employee is allowed to work in their department at a time, due to this reduced work flow companies are laying employees off or are going bankrupt.
Q: Has the government enlisted the assistance of the private security sector?
A: No, only government forces.
Q: What’s on your radar screen, do you have any particular fears or concerns?
A: The main concern is that a number of civilians are not acting as they should and that the riots taking place can lead to COVID-19 spreading across the country, a scenario that would be difficult to contain. We need to remain on high alert, manage the prices of commodity goods carefully, and make sure that civilians take the Covid-19 outbreak seriously.
The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the interviewee. They are published in good faith and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of PTG.