Malawi’s President Peter Mutharika said Saturday he was taking a wage cut to help fund the fight against the coronavirus, and ordered his government to the same.
Mutharika said in a statement he had ordered the treasury to cut his own salary and the wages of his ministers and deputy ministers by 10 percent for three months.
The money saved would be directed towards the fight against the novel coronavirus, he added.
Malawi has so far recorded four cases of the virus.
“Government will take measures to protect jobs and incomes, protect businesses and ensure continuity of the supply chain and the survival of the economy,” he said in a statement.
Mutharika also announced the opening of new testing centres for COVID-19 and the recruitment by the health ministry of 2,000 extra staff.
“We need more soldiers and human power in this fight,” he said.
Mutharika declared a state of emergency on March 23 to combat the virus, closing schools until further notice.
Malawi is one of the poorest countries in the world. According to World Bank figures, more than half of the 17 million population lives below the poverty line.