CORONAVIRUS DIARIES: DAY #98 – Uniting the Efforts of the GCC

June 17, 2020

“Individually, we are a single drop. Together, we are an ocean.”

Ryunosuke Satoro

Each country’s government contributed all their hard work and efforts in fighting the coronavirus pandemic. However, each response is better when it is implemented as a collective group. Therefore, the countries of the Gulf Cooperation Council seeks to unite all their imposed measures against the threat of COVID-19 disease.

In Kuwait, the Ministry of Health reported 575 new coronavirus cases with three additional deaths and 690 recoveries. It brings to a total number of 37,533 cases with 306 fatalities and 28,896 recovered cases. Within the new cases, 317 are Kuwait citizens composing 55.13 percent, while 258 are residents from various nationalities of about 44.86 percent. In the governorates, there are 144 cases in Al Ahmadi, 139 in Al Jahram 128 in Al Farwaniya, 96 in Hawally, and 68 in the Capital. Among the residential areas, Al-Qaser is the highest with 29 cases.

Currently, there are 8,331 active cases as it decreased from 8,449 from the previous report. Compared to yesterday, the new number of cases increased.

Update of COVID-19 cases in Kuwait on June 17, 2020

Launching of New Electronic Service

Amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Ministry of Interior officially launched a new electronic service for all residency holders under Article 14. It aims to allow the temporary residency holders to transfer their previous status of residency. The service will renew the regular residence for the residence holders whose residency will expire on August 31, 2020. However, the service is continuously developing to assist the citizens and residents better. 

It will significantly save effort and time as the completion of transactions is hastened. Therefore, the Interior Ministry urged all people who can benefit from the service to register to the Ministry’s official website immediately. They must follow all the necessary steps for a successful transaction. To access the link to Interior Ministry, click here!

New Electronic Service of Interior Ministry

It is a good thing that the renewal of the residency will be conducted through this new electronic service. I can see that they are putting all their efforts into ways to serve the community better. I thank the Interior Ministry for launching this service. I hope that it will be beneficial for all citizens and residents. 

Government’s Response to MPs Positive Result of COVID-19 Testing

The National Assembly was alerted following the information provided by the Health Minister Sheikh Dr. Basel Al-Sabah that one of the Member of Parliament (MPs) tested positive for coronavirus infection. According to National Assembly Speaker Marzouq Ali Al-Ghanim, they instructed all MPs to comply with the preventative measures in containing the spread of the virus. It leads to the suspension of their session as they remain committed to the decision of the office. They will soon continue their regular legislative session as they coordinate with the Kuwait government. 

 As a response, the authorities directed a team from the Health Ministry to sterilize Abdullah Al-Salem Hall as one of the health preventive measures against the transmission of coronavirus. 

Sterilization of National Assembly

 I appreciate the immediate response of the health authorities in sterilizing the area. It is essential to preserve our leaders’ health for the whole community needs them to guide the country. For that, they set an outstanding example for the citizens and residents to completely comply with the implemented guidelines against the coronavirus disease.    

Meeting of GCC Health Ministers

 The Health Ministers of the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) conducted their meeting today to discuss further the necessary health measures, coordination between the GCC countries, and the health sector’s role in contributing to the gradual restoration to the normalcy of its member countries. Their main agenda is to determine the possible means of unifying the countries’ efforts in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, according to Dr. Rehab Al-Watyan, the Director of International Health Relations at the Kuwait Ministry of Health (MOH).

In the virtual conference, Assistant Secretary Dr. Mohammad Al-Khashti represented the absence of Kuwait Health Minister Sheikh Basel Al-Sabah. Together, they deliberated each GCC country’s plans for its gradual return to normalcy. It includes the resumption of regular activities and businesses and the reopening of the borders.

 The Ministers instructed the committees to determine the status and evolution of the pandemic. The committees will maintain their contacts through the joint operations room. Lastly, they are grateful to the GCC countries’ top leaders for their keenness in prioritizing their citizen’s health, their unceasing support on the health sectors, and their underlining compliments of the World Health Organization for the GCC countries’ response to the pandemic.

Today marks the 18th day of the government’s first-phase plan. I significantly commend the substantial coordination of the GCC countries in fighting the COVID-19 disease together. Showing how strong their relations towards one another, they seek to unify their efforts in eliminating its transmission. Within the coming months, I hope for the success of their primary goals in prioritizing public health for all. 

List of Unclaimed Passports

The Philippine Embassy of Kuwait reiterated its announcement to the individuals who still did not claim their newly issued passports from the following releasing dates. Check the following links each month for the name of the applicants.

  1. For the releasing dates of January 2020, click here!
  2. For the releasing dates of February 2020, click here!
  3. For the releasing dates of March 2020,
    click here for Batch 1
    click here for Batch 2
    click here for Batch 3

 The Embassy affirmed that if their names are present in the list, they must immediately claim their passports from the Embassy’s office. They will be available from Sunday to Thursday from 7:00 am to 11:00 am. The applicants do not need any online appointments to claim their passports. 

Shifting of Quarantine Measures

Update of COVID-19 cases in the Philippines on June 17, 2020

The Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) registered 56 new COVID-19 cases of Overseas Filipinos abroad with 24 added deaths and ten recoveries. It brings to a total record of 6,074 cases with 446 fatalities and 2,842 recovered cases. Currently, 2,766 Overseas Filipino patients are receiving medical treatment of which 2,018 are in the Middle East/Africa, 508 is in Europe, 157 is in the Americas, and 83 is in the Asia Pacific. For today, the Americas rank second in the tally of fatalities where the Middle East remains the highest.

 With the easing of quarantine measures in the country, the Joint Task Force COVID Shield Commander, Lt. Gen. Guillermo Eleazar, reminded the public not to be complacent about the ongoing threat of coronavirus in the country. The transmission of coronavirus disease still exists in the community. If people would stop observing stringent proper precautions, then it could gravely hit the country again.

All provinces in the country were shifted to the lower class of quarantine measures except for Cebu City, which was moved back to the enhanced community quarantine. The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said that they implemented ECQ again to Cebu City to intensify its response efforts against the pandemic. It aims to allow the region to conduct quarantine, contact tracing, and COVID-19 tests to reduce its transmission, according to DILG Secretary Eduardo Año.

Additionally, the authorities imposed modified enhanced community quarantine for Talisay City, one of the cities under the province of Cebu, for the same purpose. The hospitals within Cebu City reports the critical condition that they are experiencing as more coronavirus patients are confined. The DILG assured the residents that the government is ready to assist the individuals that are displaced from their work due to the implementation of ECQ.

 The decisions of the Philippine government in shifting the class of community quarantine measures are for the good of all. I am grateful that they are very cautious in easing the restrictions to contain its transmission within the high-risk areas. I pray for our fellow Filipinos’ safety as our country continues its battle against the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“Ipinagkaloob nawa ng Diyos, na siyang nagbibigay sa atin ng katatagan at lakas ng loob, na kayo’y mamuhay nang may pagkakaisa kay Cristo Jesus.”

Mga Taga Roma 15:5

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Author

  • Gracia Amor, A Multi-Award winner blogger; Presidential Award; Mass Media Advocacy Award, Philippine Expat Blog Award, and Most Outstanding Balikbayan Award. An OFW and Investment Literacy Advocate. Her first book, the Global Filipino Bloggers OFW Edition, reviewed and launched at Philippine Embassy Kuwait. Became a certified Registered Financial Planner of the Philippines (RFP), with specialization in Stock Market. Currently, a position PH stock trader in PSE. Digital Marketing Specialist. A proud founder of Teachers Specialist Org in Kuwait TSOK, Filipino Bloggers in Kuwait FBK. A Poet and a Photo hobbyist in between.

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