Bingo banned in measles crackdown

Bingo is the latest form of public gathering to be banned in response to the growing measles epidemic and a state of emergency declaration that instructs people to avoid public gatherings. 

Bingo nights around Samoa have been put on hold until further notice. 

To prevent the further spread of measles, the Samoa Gambling Authority (S.G.A.) has notified licensed organisations, church and village communities to end bingo nights until further notice.

This follows the Government's declaration of a state of emergency last week. A crackdown on public gatherings, especially children's attendance and compulsory gatherings were included in the orders. 

Police have been instructed to keep the peace and provide support where needed. 

All schools, including universities, have also been ordered to close with exams postponed until further notice.

The S.G.A. has also advised the public who conduct bingo nights to put a stop to the practice starting from Thursday, 21 November, 2019.

The Samoa Police Services will be enforcing the orders from Cabinet, according to a public statements.

Also to administer the state of emergency, the Government have established a National Advisory Committee to deal with the crisis.

“The Orders of State of Emergency are in effect immediately as of today following the endorsement by the Member of the Council of Deputies Afioga Le Mamea Lemalu Su’a Tuiletufuga Leatuavao Ropati Mualia, acting in the absence of the Head of State and after consultation with Cabinet," said the Acting Prime Minister and Health Minister,  Faimalotoa Kika Stowers-Ah Ka, on Friday night. 

The total number of suspected measles cases in Samoa has now risen to 1,174 as of Monday, as the epidemic surges across the nation.

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