Skopje, 10 March 2020 (MIA) – There have been 496 coronavirus tests in the country over the past 24 hours, of which 48 came out positive, bringing the total to 711 cases out of 7,067 tested thus far, said Health Minister Venko Filipche on Friday.
Filipche said the testing of SDSM and VMRO-DPMNE leaders, Zoran Zaev and Hristijan Mickoski respectively, was not a matter of political priority, but for the purpose of protecting many others in daily communication with them.
“They have intensive contacts with many people, representatives of institutions and ministers. This is not a political priority by protection of the state interests and maintaining the functionality of institutions, especially in time of crisis. These are people in intensive communication with the media, one of our biggest partners in this battle, and in this sense, one of the objectives was to protect the employees of media, which the two leaders often visit and where they give interviews,” said Filipche.
Regarding the full nationwide weekend lockdown, he said the citizens understand the need for such measure.
“I know it is difficult to stay home considering the nice weather, but we must demonstrate maximum responsibility and abide by the measures,” said Filipche.
According to him, this situation will not last for a long time, as long as people stick to the rules.
“It is very important that we have a linear growth of patients, which means that the coronavirus impact has been softened,” noted Filipche.
As of next week, he added, preparations will start for the day when our lives gradually go back to normal.