Georgetown, Guyana (April 24, 2020): President David Granger, this morning, convened a meeting of the National Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Task Force (NCTF) and has directed that Director General of the Ministry of the Presidency (MOTP), Mr.Joseph Harmon should carry out the functions of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the NCTF.

The President said the CEO, under the general or specific directions of the Chairman of the NCTF is to establish a permanent National Task Force Secretariat; assignpermanent staff to manage the national campaign; create preventive measures against the disease to safeguard citizens’ health and collaborate with regional task forces and stakeholders to safeguard citizens’ health.

The CEO is responsible, under the direction of the Chair, for directing the NCTF operations and restarting interrupted activities; all important logistics measures necessary to prevent the disease from spreading further, directing rapid responses to unexpected and emergency incidents; developing short-term plans for disease prevention and safety of the people and communicating directly with agencies, ministries, regional task forces, agencies and stakeholders.

The CEO is responsible also for disseminating accurate information with regard to COVID-19 to the public.

President Granger has announced also that Colonel (ret’d) Lawrence Paul, Senior Executive Director of the BertramCollins College of the Public Service has been seconded to the NCTF. Dr. Mark Kirton will assume Colonel Paul’s post.

Similarly, Mr. Mark Archer, Director,Public Information and Press Service (PIPS) Unit of the MOTP has relinquished his appointment and will work with the NCTF on a full-time basis.

Ms. Ariana Gordon will assume the post of Director of the PIPS Unit effective April 25, 2020.

The Head of State iterated that efforts are being made continuously to strengthen the NCTF to the fight against thedreaded COVID-19. He assured thatthe Task Force and the Ministry of Public Healthare working assiduously to overcome the challenges posed by COVID-19.

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