PORT MORESBY: The National Operations Center (NOC 19) and the Prime Minister’s office were locked down as of 10am this morning after reports that a “frontline responder” had tested positive.
Both entrances into the premises were blocked off, with staff and visitors ordered to remain inside while police manned the gated to the Manasupe and neighbouring Morauta haus.
Government staff in the reported that they were given consent forms to fill in preparation for COVID-19 testing. Senior police officers also present during the morning briefings were also referred to be tested at the Rita Flynn courts where a facility has been set up.
Information from within NOC19 was that they rapid tests were being carried out, level by level, and that those who had been at Morauta Haus in the last two weeks were to report to the Rita Flynn Complex (now an Isolation site) for swabbing.
An official statement released a just after 3pm by SOE Controller, David Manning, said the person has been isolated and quarantined and contract tracing has begun. This will include the places the person visited and the people contacted.
“The person is well at this moment. But as a best practice, health and safety response, we have locked down the Joint Agency Task Force National Operations Centre to carry out testing of all our staff.
“I call upon the people of NCD, Central and PNG to remain calm. We have identified a positive case. All measures are now being taken to trace all persons who have come into contact with this person.
Initially, an official statement had been released by the Prime Minister or the National Department of Health (NDOH). Communications staff from the NDOH said there was a strong possibility that there would be no press conference today.
Then an internal memo from the SOE Controller, was leaked on Facebook and circulated on Whatsapp.
The NOC19, is where daily briefings are held and conferences are broadcast and has been having an influx of visitors over the past few weeks.The NOC19, is where daily briefings are held and conferences are broadcast and has been having an influx of visitors over the past few weeks.