News Alerts

22 May 2020 | 12:03 AM UTC

Botswana: Nationwide lockdown measures to be lifted on May 22 /update 8

Botswana News Alert

Botswana authorities to lift 48-day lockdown on May 22; follow government directives

TIMEFRAME expected from 5/21/2020, 9:00 PM until 5/31/2020, 11:59 PM (Africa/Gaborone). COUNTRY/REGION Botswana

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Event

Botswana authorities have announced that the 48-day lockdown introduced to curb the spread of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic will end at midnight (local time) on Thursday, May 21. Schools and businesses wishing to reopen from May 22 are to adhere to the government's stringent conditions, including body temperature checks, regular disinfection, and the wearing of face masks. Additionally, those traveling between the country's nine coronavirus zones will still require a permit to do so.

All international and domestic commercial flights remain suspended indefinitely. The country's land borders have been closed since Tuesday, March 24, except for freight traffic. Any returning citizens or residents will be subject to a 14-day quarantine period.

As of May 21, there are 29 confirmed COVID-19 cases and one related fatality nationwide. Further international spread of the virus is expected in the near term.

Context

The first case of COVID-19 was reported on December 31 and the source of the outbreak has been linked to a wet market in Wuhan (Hubei province, China). Human-to-human and patient-to-medical staff transmission of the virus have been confirmed. Many of the associated fatalities have been due to pneumonia caused by the virus.

Cases of the virus have been confirmed in numerous countries and territories worldwide. Virus-screening and quarantining measures are being implemented at airports worldwide, as well as extensive travel restrictions. On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the global outbreak a pandemic.

Pneumonia symptoms include dry cough, chest pain, fever, and trouble breathing. Pneumonia can be contagious and can be transmitted from human to human. The influenza virus, or the flu, is a common cause of viral pneumonia.

Advice

Measures adopted by local authorities evolve quickly, and are usually effective immediately. Depending on the evolution of the outbreak in other countries, authorities are likely to modify, at very short notice, the list of countries whose travelers are subject to border control measures or entry restrictions upon their arrival to the territory in question. It is advised to postpone nonessential travel due to the risk that travelers may be refused entry or be subject to quarantine upon their arrival or during their stay.

To reduce the risk of transmission, travelers are advised to abide by the following measures:

  • Frequently clean hands by applying an alcohol-based hand rub or washing with soap and water.
  • When coughing and sneezing, cover your mouth and nose with a flexed elbow or tissue; if used, throw the tissue away immediately and wash hands.
  • If experiencing a fever, cough, difficulty breathing, or any other symptoms suggestive of respiratory illness, including pneumonia, call emergency services before going to the doctor or hospital to prevent the potential spread of the disease.

 

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