The Government’s Covid-19 fighters with representatives from partner Agencies underwent a lessons’ learnt postmortem on Monday 25 May regarding last week’s covid-19 Lockdown exercise.
Called the “Aelan Lockdown” and code-named “EXALD20”, the simulated lockdown exercise was conducted from Wednesday 20 to Friday 22 May in the Honiara emergency zone which was implemented by the Government’s frontline officers and agency partners.
Chair of the Government’s Covid-19 Oversight Committee and Secretary to Cabinet, James Remobatu said the exercise was part of the Government’s overall preparedness and Response Plan against COVID 19.
The Lessons Learnt Workshop was carried out to evaluate;
- Specific skills, tasks, knowledge and attitude within each of the sectors involved;
- Emergency policies, plans, SOPs for specific sector and across different sectors (interoperability);
- The operational readiness of different sectors to respond to reported COVID-19 cases in Solomon Islands;
- Chain of command, roles and responsibilities within a sector and across different sectors as well as at different decision- making levels;
- Public reaction to lockdown measures.
Mr Remobatu said the postmortem exercise is aimed at exploring the strengths and challenges that were experienced during the exercise and identifying areas that need improvement.
The workshop also discusses recommendations to enhance the state of preparedness of the Government and its key institutions and stakeholders to manage the critical components of health, safety and security, and the socioeconomic impacts of a lockdown which will be implemented should a COVID-19 positive case is confirmed.
The success of the exercise did not only showed what was done right but also exposed the shortfalls and gaps in our plans, skill set, knowledge and State Of Standard Operation Procedures.
“We need to make drastic improvements within and across sectors if we are to enhance our state of preparedness and readiness to deal effectively and efficiently with positive COVID-19 cases in the country”, said Mr. Remobatu.
He acknowledges the N-DOC, Government Agencies, Public Officials, Stakeholders, Partners, the Exercise Control Team and the role players from National Red Cross Society for commitment and efforts to plan and execute the exercise.
The direct support by UNDP to host the Exercise Control Team at their office and the SINU for availing the School of Fisheries premises as the staging center for the role players have been generously acknowledged.