Raul Castro Calls For More Discipline In Combating The Mosquito That Transmits Zika / EFE, 14ymedio

Young recruits from the Youth Labor Army, EJT, during the fumigation campaign against the Aedes aegypti mosquito. (14ymedio)
Young recruits from the Youth Labor Army, EJT, during the fumigation campaign against the Aedes aegypti mosquito. (14ymedio)

14ymedio biggerEFE / 14ymedio, Havana, 7 March 2016 – Cuban President Raul Castro urged an increase in discipline and acting “energetically” against the unfinished and “constant” hygiene campaign undertaken on the island to combat the mosquito that transmits the Zika virus and other illnesses, according to the official media on Monday.

“This cannot be one more campaign,” said Raul Castro during a meeting he chaired at the Ministry of Public Health to analyze the measures taken throughout the country to avoid the spread of diseases transmitted by the Aedes Aegypti mosquito, according to the state newspaper Granma.

At that meeting the health authorities, the government, the ruling Communist Party, and the Revolutionary Armed Forces (FAR), the Cuban president said that it is “vital to ensure that everything is being done well, with integrity and that it is maintained over time.”

He also classified the situation of garbage collection in Havana as “chronic,” with 23,800 cubic meters of trash generated every day, of which 6,300 remain in the street for lack of trucks.

Castro ordered a “final solution” to this project, “without improvisations” and with “discipline” in the scheduling, the repairs and maintenance of the equipment dedicated to this service in the country’s capital.

For several weeks, Cuba has been developing an action program that includes the mobilization of 9,000 troops from the Revolutionary Armed Forces and 200 police with fumigations and inspections in homes and workplaces to confront the viruses that cause Zika, Dengue fever and Chikungunya.

At the meeting with health authorities, the government, the Communist Party, the Revolutionary Armed Forces (FAR), the Ministry of Interior and social organizations in the provinces, he recalled that so far Cuban has had two cases of the Zika virus imported from Venezuela and “active” vigilance is being maintained over “non-specific fever syndromes.”

It was also learned from the daily media that more than 800 active police have participated in the campaign to take action against those who refuse to fumigate and take sanitation actions in their homes and yards.

According to the report, at the end of the second cycle of the hygiene campaigh 12,737 homes were reported as unfumigated because they were closed, due to “inadequate planning” of the work and “deficiencies” in the notices to residents, and frequent “failures” to meet the established schedule.

Health authorities have explained through the local media that the objective of the plan is to fight the Aedes aegypti and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes, transmitting agents of these diseases, as both are present in several areas of the island.

On 22 February, President of Cuba Raul Castro urged Cubans to take as “a personal matter” fighting the mosquito that transmits these diseases in a statement entitled Call To Our People, reported in the mainstream media of the island.