The main opposition Nepali Congress (NC) today registered a motion of urgent public importance calling for broader national solidarity to prevent the outbreak of coronavirus.

Tabling the motion at the House of Representatives on behalf of his party today, NC Lawmaker Gagan Thapa urged the government to launch an integrated program and formulate an action plan to prevent the spread of COVID-19 in the country.

“Although we don’t have anything to worry about till date, we should be well-prepared to face the worst situation due to this health epidemic. What are we going to do if it goes viral like in Iran?” Thapa asked.

Reminding that the World Health Organization (WHO) had enlisted Nepal among highly vulnerable countries to COVID-19, Thapa expressed his concerns over weak border security and poor availability of healthcare facilities.

He further stressed the need for a collective effort by all three tiers of government, ministries, parliament and community before it is late.

“We also need to track those who come from abroad including Nepali nationals,” he said.

On the occasion, he also urged the government to disseminate information through one-door policy as people are left panic due to misleading information and rumors regarding the viral outbreak.

Expressing concern over schools being run, House meetings being called and ministers on tour abroad amid a public announcement by the government to avoid public gatherings, Thapa also urged the government to take necessary steps to ensure that hotels, airlines, banks and other sectors will not be affected by this.

“I also request the government to ensure the public that there will not be any sort of shortage of daily commodities, medications and other essentials,” he said.

Other lawmakers Sanjaya Kumar Gautam, Divyamani Rajbhandari, Rajendra Kumar KC and Dr Narayan Khadka seconded the motion.