The two economic power regions in a lockdown

From two to eight Coronavirus cases reported in a period of 2 weeks in Namibia, Government decided to act and not wait until the situation was escalating. Government announced a lockdown of Khomas and Erongo regions.

We can not wait until the next case is confirmed for us to take necessary measures to combat and prevent the spread of COVID-19. Waiting until one more case is one too many, said Dr Haufiku.
Internal travels are restricted for a period of 21 days and this will apply to the great Khomas and Erongo regions, effective from Friday, 27 March 2020 until Thursday, 16 April 2020. So travels to and from the country’s two main economic regions are restricted until then unless otherwise these travels were special circumstances. Special circumstances include people with health emergencies and the movement of goods and services between the two regions.
Lockdown is more effective when you lockdown the whole country but seeing that all our cases so far are imported and both in Khomas region and that movements between Khomas and Erongo are the highest in the land. Khomas is where the capital is and Erongo is where the Port is. Its logical yet effective to lock the two regions. A portion of Otjozondjupa which is Okahandja and a portion of Hardap which is Rehoboth will be victims of the lockdown too. Said Dr Haufiku.
Travels to all countries around the world are also banned for a period of 30 days.
Government also closed entry ports for people and customers at Oshikango, Katwitwi, Wenela, Buitepos, Ariamsvlei, Noordoewer, Walvis bay and Lüderitz.
Special circumstances for the entrance of certain persons into Namibia will, however, be considered and approved by the relevant establishments, depending on the nature of travel to be undertaken, and the criticality such mission. Such establishments will bear in mind the impact this could have on the safety and security of Namibia.
Special circumstances include people with health emergencies, Health professionals who need to come in to help us fight COVID-19, Movement of goods and services because we can not close our entries that deliver things such as medical supplies, food items. These are some of the cases that are going to receive special entrance into the country. Said Nangombe the Executive Director at the Health Ministry.
Returning Namibians and permanent residents arriving from high-risk countries are to be subjected to mandatory supervised quarantine for 14 days, at their own cost.
Government signposted that special exemption relates to business, commerce and trade missions and activities only from neighbouring countries on a mutual basis, to facilitate the flow of supplies, goods, commodities and services into Namibia.
All government employees as well as those in the State Owned Enterprises (SOEs) and private sector are to work from home for the next 14 days, except those providing critical services.
The categories of affected services will be announced soon.
“COVID-19 is not only a threat to the lives of the Namibian people and the public health system, it also carries negative economic impacts threatening the survival of businesses and consequently jobs and livelihoods. Our key priority is therefore to curb the spread of disease. While the pandemic that we are faced with today is unprecedented, we are confident that working collaboratively, we will respond effectively to minimise the spread of the virus and loss of lives and restore the health of those affected.
the private sector is encouraged to support government’s response measures and mobilise resources to combat the further spread of this virus.
“The public is urged to remain at home and avoid public gatherings at places such as bars, shebeens, nightclubs and markets.
President commanded that law enforcement agents must enforce these measures. Cabinet further decreed that private health service providers must inform the Ministry of Health and Social Services immediately upon identifying a suspected case.
“The government fully understands that these are extraordinary measures. They are adopted with the sole purpose of protecting the health, security and safety of the Namibian people. During this difficult period, I call on all Namibians to cooperate with the authorities and to remain calm, in order to ensure that public order is not compromised. Allow the authorities to work unhindered, Stay at home, avoid crowd gathering and stay safe,” President Geingob said.

To read more: pick up your copy of the Namib Times at any retail outlet in Walvis Bay and Swakopmund. Available in Windhoek at selected stores, at Arandis (Shoprite and Arandis Service Station); Usakos; Henties Bay (Spar; Woermann Brock) and Windhoek (Windhoek: Shoprite Maerua Mall; Shoprite Katutura; Shoprite Ind. Av; Shoprite Lafrenz Industrial; Shoprite Okurayangava; Shoprite U-Save; Fountain OK Foods (Baines); Maerua Superspar).

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