Wuhan mayor ready to resign due to coronavirus outbreak

Wuhan mayor ready to resign due to coronavirus outbreak

Mayor of Wuhan, a Chinese city ravaged by a coronavirus, Zhou Xianwang has admitted that his government withheld information about an outbreak from the public.

Zhou Xianwang confessed that his team had not released information about the situation 'timely'. The revelations came after Zhou disclosed that around five million Wuhan residents had left the city before it went into lockdown last Thursday.

The official explained that his government would need to receive authorisation from high above before making any announcement regarding the novel coronavirus.

"On one hand, we did not reveal [information] timely; on the other, we did not use effective information to improve our work to a satisfactory level," the Daily Mail cited Zhou as saying.

"As a local government, after I receive the information, [I] can only release it after being authorised. [Many people] could not understand this at the time," he said.  

Zhou added that he and the Communist Party Secretary of Wuhan were willing to resign in exchange for forgiveness from the public.

Increasingly drastic anti-disease efforts began with the January 22 suspension of plane, train and bus links to Wuhan, a city of 11 million people in central China where the virus was first detected last month. That lockdown has expanded to a total of 17 cities with more than 50 million people in the most far-reaching disease-control measures ever imposed.