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Sep
1
2020
Prime Minister's Office - PMO, Bhutan

Dear friends across the country,
I can imagine the warm sun and crisp air swiftly brushing your faces as you step outside your homes this morning, after weeks. I can see smiling children running out of their homes, giggling in glee.
It is a warm, beautiful autumn day, a weather befitting of a new chapter of post lockdown we have embraced today. The bright sun has stroked the leaves that are gradually bleaching, and with this, revitalised our energy and renewed our hope.
But as much as we unwind from the stifling ways of lockdown, we should also stamp on our minds that the risk of getting COVID-19 was far lesser when we were indoor. The infections, even if there were, were held back within the homes.
Which means our stepping outside should be that of caution and vigilance. You deserve a good breather. But beyond that, if it isn't life determining, please choose to stay home.
You know countries have experienced spike of positive cases, detected mostly in about 10-12 days of post lockdown. It is attributed to negligent behaviour as many allow themselves to set free without inhibition.
As responsible citizens, I know you do not want to be that one person who tests postive out of sheer negligence, risking your family, community and country.
Which means with easing, should we have some active infections, the so-called outliers that have escaped the scanner, our communities will be infected in no time.
In order to avoid this episode, we designed the phase-wise relaxation spread over 10 days. All of us must take extra care and precaution in the coming days. While you watch your own moves, please let everyone know about this potential risk.
Meanwhile, our friends in some of the bordering districts will gradually step into the respective zones first, before they relish more of outdoor activities. Given the risks associated, we have to slow down in these communities.
Please know we are all grateful and inspired by your sense of responsibility in cooperating with the authorities and preventing the disease from spilling beyond. For the rest of the nation, those residing in border towns are all our frontliners. Thank you!
As I write this, our health surveillance team are already switching on to highest alert mode. Other frontline workers have activated more vigilance. For our own sake and for those who are working hard to protect us, let's deal with this in full awareness.
We have come this far, together. We can tide over from here too. Wishing you a month full of good health and happiness.
Dr Lotay Tshering
Image: The view, as I cycled towards Phajoding base early this morning. As the sun pecked the mountain top and gradually illuminated the capital town, I prayed for my King, country and the people.

September 1, 2020

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