Zanzibar tests drones spraying rice fields to fight malaria

Trainee drone pilots from the State University of Zanzibar learn how to fly a drone to spray the breeding grounds of malaria-carrying mosquito in the southern Cheju region of the island of Zanzibar, Tanzania. (AP)
Updated 05 November 2019

Zanzibar tests drones spraying rice fields to fight malaria

  • The spraying by drones is a test to see if it will help the government of Zanzibar reach its goal of eliminating malaria on the archipelago by 2023

ZANZIBAR, Tanzania: Drones are being tested to see if they can help fight malaria on the island of Zanzibar, off the coast of Tanzania.

The drones will spray a silicone-based liquid on rice paddies, which have stagnant water where malaria-carrying mosquitoes lay their eggs. The substance will spread across the water and prevent the eggs from hatching. It is hoped this will significantly reduce the numbers of the malaria-carrying anopheles mosquitoes on the island.

The spraying by drones is a test to see if it will help the government of Zanzibar reach its goal of eliminating malaria on the archipelago by 2023, according to the strategic plan adopted by Zanzibar Malaria Elimination Program.


Singapore closing workplaces, schools in latest coronavirus measures

Updated 23 min 25 sec ago

Singapore closing workplaces, schools in latest coronavirus measures

  • Singapore’s infections, both imported and domestic, have been rising sharply in recent weeks and topped 1,000 this week
SINGAPORE: Singapore will close schools and most workplaces, except for essential services and key economic sectors, for a month, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong said on Friday, as part of stricter measures to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Singapore’s infections, both imported and domestic, have been rising sharply in recent weeks and topped 1,000 this week. It reported its fifth death on Friday.
“We have decided that instead of tightening incrementally over the next few weeks, we should make a decisive move now, to pre-empt escalating infections,” Lee said in a speech.
Food establishments, markets and supermarkets, clinics, hospitals, utilities, transport and key banking services will remain open. The city-state will also move to full home-based learning in its schools and universities.
Lee urged everyone to stay home as much as possible and to avoid socialising with others beyond their own household.
He said the country had enough food supplies to last through this period and beyond.
The city-state will also announce additional support for households and businesses on Monday, he added.
The Southeast Asian nation has adopted some social distancing measures to curb the spread of the virus, but had let schools, offices and restaurants remain open.