We’ve zero risk  for coronavirus, says minister

We’ve zero risk for coronavirus, says minister

MASERU – THE Minister of Tourism, Environment and Culture Joang Molapo says Lesotho remains an “extremely safe” place for tourists, as many countries lock down their borders to stem the spread of coronavirus.
He described the risks of contracting the virus in the country as “absolutely zero” while encouraging people to continue visiting the country.

This is despite a government call to ban all international government trips due to fear of the deadly virus, which has now killed about 5 000 people and left many infected worldwide.
In Africa, at least 30 countries have reported cases and health experts say no country is safe.
Some local politicians have criticised Molapo, saying welcoming tourists during this period when the country does not have equipment and medication for COVID- 19 puts the lives of Basotho at risk.
Qalabane MP Motlalentoa Letsosa described Molapo’s statement as “irresponsible”.

“A whole minister is encouraging people to come to Lesotho saying the country is safe. That’s so irresponsible of him,” Letsosa said.
He likened Molapo to some people who are claiming that the virus will not affect Lesotho because “we are eating theepe”.Theepe is a wild spinach.
He said the fact that the country is yet to record a case does not mean Lesotho is insulated from the virus.

“It (coronavirus) is already around the corner as we speak, it is in South Africa, so the chances are too high for us to have it, and it will kill us,” he said.
Senqu MP Likeleli Tampane said Molapo is out of order and has left the country confused.

“I am surprised about what Molapo is saying,” said Tampane. “I am strongly against what Molapo has said. South Africa has closed its borders but Molapo is encouraging people to come to Lesotho,” she said.
Basotho National Party (BNP) deputy leader Machesetsa Mofomobe said like any other country, Lesotho is not safe from the virus.
“Joang should not have talked like that mostly because other countries are closing their borders,” Mofomobe said.

Thooe Ramolibeli

 

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