Thabane orders total lockdown

Thabane orders total lockdown

MASERU-PRIME Minister Thomas Thabane has ordered a total lockdown starting Sunday midnight until April 21.
This means people will not be allowed to leave their residences throughout the three weeks, except to buy essentials and seek medical help.
The lockdown is an extraordinary measure to prevent the spread of coronavirus in the country.

South Africa, already grappling with close to 800 infected people, will be on lockdown starting midnight today.
Thabane also said Basotho in South Africa should not to come back home once the lockdown starts.
“They should stay where they are now, except those who are transporting essential goods and services such as health services and food,” he said.

Thabane said the cabinet made the decision yesterday afternoon in a bid to respond to the deadly Coronavirus outbreak.
Thabane said the cases of the disease in South Africa are growing at an alarming rate.
He said the government has already set aside some money to fight the disease.

Only essential public services would be allowed, he said.
These include health, security, important banking services, supermarkets and grocery shops, pharmacies and medical stores and civil servants doing essential services in government offices.
Other essential services include water, energy and car fuel as well as essential farming services.

Thabane said all people are ordered to stay at home and should only leave for essentials like food and health services.
All gatherings will be banned. Funerals will be restricted to only 50 people and there will be strict measures to prevent the spread of the disease.
Soldiers and police will enforce the lockdown.

“All security agencies are hereby ordered to immediately enforce the measures meant to stop this disease by controlling the movement of the people,” Thabane said.
He said all forms of public entertainment and sports will be banned.

Thabane said people should stop making unnecessary trips outside Lesotho.
Media houses that publish unfounded information on the COVID- 19 will face the wrath of the law and could be shut down.
Thabane said in a case where there could be a COVID- 17 related death, the government would align itself with World Health Organisation (WHO) guidelines on Public Health Order 1970.

“I make an appeal to those we are in leadership with to come together in a fight against this disease,” he said.
He called for unity in the battle against the disease that has infected 450 000 and killed 20 000 people globally. Lesotho is yet to have a confirmed case.

Majara Molupe

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