Don’t come for Easter, Majoro tells SA-based Basotho

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Nthatuoa Koeshe

BASOTHO based in neighbouring South Africa must stay away during the upcoming Easter holidays to avoid a fresh spike in Covid-19 cases similar to the December 2020 festive season.

This was said by Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro in his televised weekend address to the nation.

Lesotho has in the past three months registered a spike in Covid-19 cases stemming from the huge influx of travellers from South Africa during the 2020 December holidays. South Africa has the 16th highest Covid-19 infections in the world.

To avoid a repeat of the December debacle, Dr Majoro called on Basotho based in South Africa not to come home for Easter next month.

“I take this opportunity to advise all Basotho who stay in South Africa not to come home for Easter holidays as that will be another way of protecting yourselves and your loved ones,” Dr Majoro said.

He said according to the World Health Organisation (WHO), Lesotho has managed to control the positivity rate at five percent of tested specimens for at least three weeks.

“When we introduced the lockdown this year, we were at 47 percent infection rate and people were dying at a high rate. We are now at seven percent infection rate and this means in this past seven weeks, we were able to control the rate of infections.”

He said soon after the Easter holidays, the winter season will be setting in and Covid-19 cases are likely to increase sparking a third wave of infections. Therefore, it is best for Basotho based in South Africa to stay away during the Easter holidays early next month.

He said Lesotho would start receiving the first batch of vaccines from this week. He said the National Covid-19 Secretariat (NACOSEC) was working with the Ministry of Health to conscientise the public about the vaccines.

He appealed to the public the teachings seriously as they are meant to quip them with important knowledge about the vaccines.

While the curfew from 9pm to 5am remains in place, Dr Majoro said borders would now reopen for business people (including hawkers) with permits and truck drivers. The Moshoeshoe I International Airport has also been opened.

“All provisions under international travel remain the same. Movements across borders should include business people including hawkers with permits and truck drivers. Students commuters, commuting teachers and people with exceptional needs and who shall be approved by the Minister of Health (Semano Sekatle) will be allowed to travel across the borders,” Dr Majoro said.

Schools have also been allowed to reopen while adhering to standard risk-based guidelines while businesses will operate from 8am to pm.

“Restaurants and bars will only serve take aways from 8am to 7pm and alcohol sales will be permitted from Monday to Thursday,” Dr Majoro said.

 

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