As positive cases of Covid-19 continue to spread, there is a panic. But panic is not the answer; it’s in finding how we get out of such a monumental mess.

Foreign workers had to be brought in, but how those who came in could evade our standing protocols is a thing of wonder. Fixing accountability is not difficult, which must go on along with the many tracing and testing systems in place today.

The people, who are going through a difficult lockdown, for no fault of their own, are asking genuine questions. The 24-hour lockdown is extended to 72. Tracing and testing process is underway, which means lockdown could further extend depending on the results of tests in the dzongkhags.

Lockdowns are inconvenient, but it’s better to extend the lockdown period than open up frantically because our laxity has allowed the virus to come in and play its violent part—we do not yet know how many people are exposed to the virus.

The incubation period of the virus is yet to be understood. We need time; as to the results, we can only wait and wish for the best.

In the meanwhile, we must reflect. How did we get to where we are today? We have task forces at each strategic point. We also have government officials manning the exit-entry points and data—still so many people could come in and breach the country’s standing safety protocols.

The question is: Who were they, who did not even have to follow the Covid-19 protocols? How could they even be let in? We get the answer from these questions. Was it the monitoring along with the many networks we have put in place? Why is this happening? Who is to blame?

This outbreak that we are facing is the result of a failure from the strategic points. While the people put up with the ordeals of prolonged lockdown, those responsible must also be held accountable.

What we must understand, in the meanwhile, is that the virus has come in and tracing and testing will continue. That means lockdown will likely be extended beyond January 22.

Nothing will do us good until we begin to act ourselves responsibly, each individually. The government has the role to make essentials available with the least trouble to anybody; people, at the same time, must adhere to the standing health and safety protocols.

Even with the Omicron variant getting out of our hands, the plea is the same. It is the call for basic preventive measures – not gathering, staying home, avoiding unnecessary outings and reporting to health authorities.  These simple measures are still the best to contain the contagious virus.