JOINT STATEMENT BY THE MINISTER OF HEALTH AND THE MINISTER OF HOME AFFAIRS
The two ministries hereby notify the public that the permitted categories of travellers remain as follows: patients, business travellers, all classes of scholars, migrant workers, resident permit holders, daily commuting workers, pensioners, retrenched Basotho migrant workers, Basotho returnees and travellers with exceptional special needs.
Furthermore, antigen tests are restricted by South Africa for commercial truck drivers, daily commuting workers and scholars. Tests are administered when entering the South African border. A negative antigen test, to these category of travellers, will be considered valid for 14 days.
Everyone eligible for travelling is still required to present a valid, negative PCR Covid-19 certificate conducted within 72 hours of travel.
The public will be notified when the Lesotho government introduces rapid testing on its side of the border.
Ke isa hlompho ho:
- Motlotlehi, Khosi Letsie la Boraro;
- Motsamaisi oa Ntlo-ea-Senate;
- Motsamaisi oa Ntlo-ea-Bakhethoa-ba-Sechaba;
- Ea tšoereng molepo e le Moahloli-e-Moholo;
- Matlo a mabeli a ketsa molao, Masenate le Bakhethoa ba Sechaba;
- Matona a ‘Muso oa Motlotlehi; le
- Bohle ba lokeloang ke hlompho le Sechaba ka kakaretso.
Ke le hopotse hore khoeling ea ho feta, ka la 17 Phupu, ke ile ka teka kapele ho lona ka sehlohong, lintlha tse latelang:
i. Boemo ba lipalo-palo (statistics) tsa tšoaetso ea COVID-19 ka hare ho naha ka nako eo;
ii. Semetho sa ho Lepa Tlokotsi ea Tšoaetso le Mehato ea Boipaballo (Risk Determination & Mitigation Framework) se tlang ho sebelisoa ho tataisa liqeto tsa ’Muso malebana le taolo le toantšo ea seoa sena ka mekhahlelo ena:- Botala (Low Cases Stage), Boputsoa (Sporadic Cases Stage), Bopherese (Clustering Infections Stage), Bosehla ba lamunu(Low Community Transmission Stage) le Bokhubelu(High Community Transmission Stage);
iii. Melao le melaoana ea lipehelo tsa mehato ea boipaballo le ho khinoa hoa tse ling tsa likhoebo le litšebeletso mokhahlelong ka mong oa tlokotsi ea tšoaetso (Health Regulations); le
iv. Seo lipalo-palo tsa nako eo se li sibollotseng ka sekala sa tšoaetso mou R0=2.04, mme e beha naha mokhahlelong oa ’Mala-oa-Lamunu (Low Community Transmission Stage) oa boipaballo.
The National Covid-19 Secretariat (NACOSEC) handed over 100 cell-phones that were donated by the Lesotho Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) to five District Administers (DA) on Friday, 07 August 2020.
The phones will be used by front-liners in these districts for ease of communication in tracing, tracking and reporting cases of illegal crossing among others.
LCCI did this in a bid to continue rendering support to the national team on the forefront in the COVID-19 fight.
The Butha-Buthe District Administrator, Mr. Lehlohonolo Qashu, speaking on behalf of district administrators, gave thanks to LCCI for providing them with tools that will enable them to help curb the spread of the virus.
“It is not that we are any better than other districts but we are the most burdened districts when it comes to illegal crossing and vulnerability to imported case” Mr. Qashu said.
He said all they asked for prior to this was airtime to make their work easier with other local government stakeholders but LCCI has given them more than what they had asked for, “for this we will respond speedily to all calls we will receive from boarder surveillance teams when they report illegal crossing into Lesotho and covid-19 suspects who are stuck in the villages”.
Mr. Thabo Khasipe, Executive Secretary of NACOSEC demonstrated happiness at the support the private sector continues to render to the government and the secretariat during this pandemic. Mr. Khasipe said he was especially happy to witness the second phase of the handover happening in a short space of time to when the donations were received by the secretariat.
“LCCI has shown leadership by supporting NACOSEC in fighting the spread of COVID-19. I wish for more businesses to follow suit in supporting the initiative to flatten the curve of infection and raise the line of health care facilities” Mr Khasipe said.
He added that it would be impossible to win the battle without the help of private sector because, “we need everyone to take up their weapons and help where they can. We have met with local government to collaborate and improve public engagement during this pandemic and this gift is a great support to mobilising our strategy and goals” Mr. Khasipe said.
He said that NACOSEC is just a supporting structure to what districts are doing in their respective jurisdiction when it comes to fighting corona virus, “the donation offered today is so to help them (DA’s) to fight COVID-19”.
Mr. Khasipe said the country has to work hard to prevent imported infections, “if we do not monitor illegal crossings and imported cases we will be opening a tap to fill a tab without a plug. We will not be able to contain the water we desire to collect”.
Mr. Khasipe called upon all businesses to assist in fighting the pandemic.
The National Covid-19 Secretariat received 100 cell-phones from Lesotho Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) through their COVID-19 Solidarity Fund on Monday, 3 August 2020. These cell phones will be distributed in the five district’s boarder surveillance points. These districts are Mohale’s Hoek, Quthing, Qacha’s Nek, Mokhotlong and Butha-Buthe.
The phones will be used by front-liners in these districts for ease of communication in tracing, tracking and reporting cases of illegal crossing among others. LCCI did this in a bid to continue rendering support to the national team on the forefront in the COVID-19 fight.
The phones, donated to LCCI by Econet Telecom Lesotho come loaded with three months’ worth of airtime and a registered number with name and address of the user. Many front-liners in the targeted areas are challenged with communicating covid-19 responses timely and this donation aims to address this glitch.
Handing over the devices to NACOSEC, the LCCI COVID-19 Solidarity Fund member, Mr. Thuso Green said that what pleases him is that the donation presented is aligned to the Secretariats strategic objectives and they will continue to move in the direction NACOSEC has paved as the national response office.
“Our donations from now on going forward will be facilitated through NACOSEC because they have a clearer direction on how to strategically fight covid-19” Mr. Ntaote Seboka LCCI president said.
Speaking on behalf of NACOSEC, Private Sector Coordination office, Mr. Paseka Ramokoatsi said the secretariat has strategic actions in place to coordinate all stakeholders and partners in the fight against COVID-19.“We need to coordinate all efforts in order to win in this fight and private sector involvement in this regard is highly appreciated” Mr. Ramokoatsi said.
Mr. Thabo Ntoi, NACOSEC Chief of Staff accepted the donation saying the cell-phones will assist mostly the frontline workers, “these are the people who fight nail and tooth every day. They are our gun bearers fighting endlessly against COVID-19, therefore, they need the greatest support”.
Mr. Ntoi promised that these donations will go where they are intended to.
Prime Minister launches COVID-19 Laboratory.
THE National Covid-19 Secretariat (NACOSEC) witnessed a handing over of additional COVID-19 testing equipment donated by the Matekane Group of Companies (MGC) coordinated by the Ministry of Health on Tuesday, 04 August 2020 at the National Reference Laboratory.
The fight against coronavirus is a race against time and every minute that goes by with an undetected case is a call for disaster. The most critical component of response is to continuously and effectively test. It is through this lab that the ministry through NACOSEC will fulfil its mandate in effective and efficient testing and publishing of COVID-19 results. The Executive Secretary of NACOSEC, Mr Thabo Khasipe, said this marks a great milestone for the country in the fight against COVID-19 because the availability of the Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) machines will help the Ministry of health in fast track testing and give daily results. “Because of this we will be able to test, trace and treat before the virus can spread uncontrollably” Khasipe said. He further noted that the greatest weapon to fighting the virus is by optimising testing capacity. The lack of testing equipment and technologies is what has contributed to the backlog in the testing facility and this new lab with three new machines will rectify and place the country at a break-even level with the virus until it can be controlled. “The key to overcoming this pandemic is to slow transmission of the virus by preventing contagious people from infecting others,” the NACOSEC CEO noted. This machine is an addition to the already donated machines from World Health Organisation (WHO) and The National Institution for Communicable Disease (NICD). With the country at low community transmission marked as orange in the risk determination mitigation framework, the availability of machine will help flatten the curve. According to Mr Sam Matekane of Matekane Group of Companies (MGC), the machines combined will test at least 1300 to 2000 tests per day. Matekane said they advised themselves to give a helping hand by offering testing equipment to the government in the fight against coronavirus because unity is power. He urged Basotho to report to their closest health facilities when they see signs and symptoms of COVID-19 as requested. The Right Honourable the Prime Minister, Dr Moeketsi Majoro said the country has been walking a blind journey in the fight against COVID-19. This is because it was never certain how many people have been infected because swaps took longer to be tested for the virus, “it means many people are walking around with no idea of their COVID-19 status” Prime Minister Majoro said. He said this donation answers directly to the strategies of NACOSEC and that the laboratory is a tool to reaching NACOSEC’s strategy to flatten the curve and raise capacity line of health care facilities. The Prime Minister observed that Lesotho does not have to capacity to care for large number of patients, and advised Basotho to observe social distancing and good hygiene practice so as to not place burden on the already ailing health system. The building was offered by Let’seng Diamonds. “People who assisted in this fight are those with a heart to see Lesotho safe, the contribution of everyone will go a long way in the fight against COVID-19.” Dr Majoro said. This lab’s existence will have impact on the overall sustainability of the health system but primarily, during this pandemic, the control and treatment of coronavirus.