"With a view to avoiding the spread of the pandemic and the serious consequences associated with them as much as possible, after consulting the Council of the Republic and having heard the National Assembly, I declare a state of emergency that comes into force at 00:00 on 27 March," said the President in a short message read on TPA.
The state of emergency will last for 15 days, starting at 00:00 on Friday and ending at 23:00 on April 11, which can be automatically extended.
The country still records three positive cases of infection by the new coronavirus that causes this disease.
Despite the fact that the number of positive cases registered until March 23 is still small, the chief executive pointed out the importance of learning from "the mistakes of others", being recommended "to take with the required anticipation a set of extraordinary and urgent measures".
He stressed, on the other hand, that success in controlling the pandemic implies a rapid and adequate response from health services, "but also the consent of sacrifices of all citizens who are thus limited in their rights and in their social and professional life" .
João Lourenço also justified that the public health emergency "is characterized as a situation that demands the urgent use of exceptional measures for the prevention, control and containment of risks to public health".