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Lesotho reopens borders

by Lesotho Times
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Nthatuoa Koeshe

LESOTHO’S borders were reopened on Thursday last week, six months after they were closed to most travellers as part of measures aimed fighting the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.

Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro announced the reopening of the borders in a televised address to the nation early this week.

Dr Majoro was however, quick to say that only people with certificates proving that they had tested negative for Covid-19 would be allowed in and out of the country.

He said Covid-19 was not yet under control in Lesotho hence the government would be cautious in opening its borders.

He said Basotho who have been stuck in South Africa since the closure of the borders in March were now free to return home. They would however have to produce certificates confirming their negative Covid-19 status. Like all other travellers, the tests would have to be done at least 72 hours before the travelling day.

“There is a screening process which will be done to check for Covid-19 signs and if one is not infected and does not show any signs, then they will be allowed into the country,” Dr Majoro said.

He said anyone found to be positive would be taken to isolation centres and they will only be released once they have recovered.

Students and those seeking medical attention in South Africa will also need certificates proving that they are free from the disease.

“Patients who need health services from other countries will only be allowed to cross the border with a maximum of two accompanying people who both must have Covid-19 certificates.”

Dr Majoro said the Covid-10 certificates should have been acquired 72 hours before the day of travelling and they will only be valid for seven days.

If a traveller returns after the seven days on their certificate, then they will be quarantined for 10 to 15 days.

“On returning to Lesotho, travellers will be screened if the seven-day window of their Covid-19 clearance certificate is still valid. However, if they have spent the entire seven days in South Africa, then they must be quarantined,” Dr Majoro said.

Non-Basotho travellers will be required to produce a clearance certificate obtained at least 72 hours before the travelling day.

“We will screen all travellers to prove that indeed they are negative for Covid-19. If they are found to be positive, they will be quarantined but they will foot their expenses because the government does not have the funds,” Dr Majoro said.

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