Rosy fears there could be 30,000 undetected infections in the city

Rosy Senanayake

Colombo Mayor Rosy Senanayake yesterday said that there could be as many as 30,000 undetected COVID-19 cases in the Colombo Municipal Council area.

She said that the population density, lifestyle and public behaviour in Municipal areas were contributing factors to the high number of COVID-19 patients detected in the city.

On Saturday 275 infected persons were detected during random PCR tests conducted across the city, she said.

“Irrespective of warnings people in flats have not limited themselves to their confines. Some get together and play cards or cricket. They should heed the warnings of health authorities because we are passing the most dangerous phase now,” the Mayor said.

She said that the city had the highest population density in the country with 13,364 persons in a square km while the country’s average population density was 325 persons per square Km. The Colombo City extended over 37 square km. “Colombo North, Colombo Central, is where most of the labourers and workers in the city live. “Many industries, offices and ministries and private firms are in Borella, Colombo West and Colombo East. In Colombo North one square km has 24,000 persons. This is a very high density,” she said.

According to the Mayor it is estimated that Colombo has 68,812 households in 1,499 underserved settlements accounting for more than half of the city’s population. “In such neighbourhoods, residents tend to congregate in public spaces and visit neighbours.”

The Mayor said that CMC continued to distribute dry rations among families in the isolated areas and conducted random PCR tests. “People should take the warnings seriously and understand that they have a responsibility to help authorities to prevent the pandemic’s spread,” she said.

(Source: The Island – By Pradeep Prasanna Samarakoon)