According to Reuters, the anger among Shanghai residents mounts as the city reports more new Covid-19 deaths on April 22. They show the frustrations over a tight lockdown and strict online censorship.
China’s major financial hub has been struggling to deal with the nation’s biggest Covid-19 outbreak so far. New reported Covid-19 deaths reached 12 on April 22, up from 11 a day before.
The full-city lockdown began at the start of April. Stress starts to take its toll on longer-confined residents.
A six-minute video entitled “The Voice of April” showed citizens moaning about the scarcity of food and medicine as well as the city authorities’ heavy-handed approach.
Netizens battled against social media censors overnight to share that epidemic-capturing video. However, by April 23 morning, all direct references related to the video were erased from the Weibo microblogging service, while some comments criticizing the censorship persisted.
One stated that if you don’t even want to listen to just a tiny amount of genuine voices, it is really hopeless.
Many people were reminded of the social media outrage that occurred two years earlier after Li Wenliang, a doctor penalized by authorities for posting information about a new SARS-like infectious illness in Wuhan in late 2019, died from COVID-19.
Another Weibo user wrote that Dr. Li, after two years, nothing had changed. He added that people still can’t open their mouths and still can’t speak.
Despite the mounting anger and frustrations among citizens, local officials insist that no easing will occur until all new cases outside the quarantine zones have been eliminated.
According to Weibo Channel, Shanghai Mayor Gong Zheng said that the more critical the period becomes, the more the city needs to grit its teeth and focus on its strength.
According to the Shanghai authorities, the patients that died were, on average, 88 years old. None of them had been vaccinated, and all had underlying health problems.
The official data shows the number of cases outside quarantine areas dropped to 218 on April 22 from 250 the previous day.
New local asymptomatic infections increased from 15,698 on April 21 to 20,634 the following day. Total new symptomatic cases reached 2,736, up from 1,931 on April 21.
Some compounds are still reporting new cases despite being shut down for more than 30 days, casting doubt on China’s strict strategy.