MUSCAT: In implementation of Royal orders of His Majesty Sultan Haitham bin Tarik for the formation of a supreme committee to tackle developments of coronavirus (Covid-19) in light of updated health indicators, Sayyid Hamoud bin Faisal al Busaidy, Minister of Interior, chaired the first meeting of the Committee at the general diwan of the Ministry of Interior here on Thursday.
Speaking at the outset of the meeting, Sayyid Hamoud said that the issue is accorded great attention by His Majesty the Sultan and it reflects His Majesty’s concern for the health and safety of all citizens and residents alike.
The Committee reviewed the latest developments of the virus and its categorisation, on Wednesday, by the World Health Organization (WHO) as a pandemic. It also looked into coordination with the authorities concerned, as well as public awareness efforts for prevention and treatment.
The Committee discussed various aspects of handling the pandemic in the coming period and the respective precautions, recommendations and decisions.
The Committee took a number of decisions to be enforced with effect from Sunday, March 15, 2020 for a period of 30 days, as follows:
1. To stop tourist visas for all countries.
2. To suspend all types of sports activities.
3. To stop all nonclass student activities while at the same time taking into consideration procedures that might be undertaken later in accordance with updated pandemic data.
4. To stop the entry of cruise liners to ports of the Sultanate.
5. To limit court session attendance to the parties concerned only.
6. To ban serving shisha to customers at all licensed outlets.
The Supreme Committee also recommended non-travel abroad (except in extreme urgency/emergency), implementation of preventive measures at worship areas and family gatherings and it recommended non-frequenting of cinema halls.
It has been decided that the Committee will remain in constant session to follow up coronavirus pandemic data and accordingly take proper decisions.
The panel valued the efforts of all state institutions entrusted with epidemic detection and prevention, as well as the care and attention accorded to quarantined patients by health workers. — ONA