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Majoro eases Covid-19 restrictions

Ntsoaki Motaung

In responding to the progress the country is making in the fight against the Covid-19 pandemic, the Prime Minister Dr Moeketsi Majoro lifted covid-19 restrictions this week, some two years since the country went into lockdown as part of measures to curb the pandemic which has had the world on its knees since it was first discovered in Wuhan China in 2019.

Two years since the Covid-19 hit the Lesotho shores and a hard Alert-level Red national lockdown introduced, the Prime-Minister announced on Tuesday evening that there will no longer be curfew in the country and that events as well as clubs can operate as normal albeit in observance of Covid-19 safety protocols. 

Majoro said in his national address on the status of the pandemic earlier this week that the decision was reached following realization that the number of cases of Covid-19 had abated from September, October and November with a slight surge in December when Omicron variant came into the picture.

“What we have learned is that Omicron infections spread faster however we have realized that people who go to hospitals are not as many as the infections as well as deaths,” he said.

He said government has been concerned about restrictions on the business industry and movements and that is why the government resorted to revising its policy in the fight against the pandemic.

“While continuing to fight covid-19 the country is going to rely mostly on Covid-19 vaccines. It is 55% of the population that has already received their vaccine and more than 20,000 children who have also been vaccinated where the target is 240 000,” he said.

Meanwhile he indicated that outside dining and wining will also be returning to normal while vaccination is accentuated as the means of attaining resilience against the Covid-19 crisis.

“Restaurants and fast foods are permitted to operate and strictly register at entrance with proof of vaccination certification while observing all other Covid-19 protocols. Liquor stores are permitted to resume normal operations, register with proof of vaccination certification and sanitize and ensure physical distancing for sit-ins at all times. Nightclubs are to resume normal operation, strictly register with proof of vaccination certification and ensure physical distancing at all times,” he said.

The prime minister said the entertainment industry is permitted subject to issuance of permit by the police. Observe physical distancing for indoor and outdoor events in only privately owned places and provide not less than five security bouncers.

According to the National Covid-19 Secretariat (NACOSEC), under adjusted blue colour accommodation venues are open with 100% occupancy and identification registration.

“Health services resume normal operating hours. Patients who are not vaccinated against Covid-19 shall be offered counseling services and Covid-19 vaccine. Initiation schools permitted subject to adherence to standard risk based guidelines. Under Political gatherings only constituency rallies and meetings allowed and be completed by 15:00 hours. National Annual Policy and Elective Conferences are allowed only with permission from police based on the covid-19 protocols” the Premier said.     

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