Botswana: President Masisi On Self-Quarantine

Gaborone — President Dr Mokgweetsi Masisi is on a 14-day self-isolation following his weekend visit to Namibia, says an Office of the President press release. It says Director of Health Services Dr Malaki Tshipayagae placed President Masisi on self-isolation in exercise of the powers vested in him under the Public Health Act. The release explains that the rationale for the imposition of self-isolation is that while Namibia has registered three imported cases, and was considered low risk at the time of the President's visit, there is a high possibility of undetermined local transmission.

During the time of self-isolation, President Masisi will be tested for COVID-19), says the release.

It says the President will therefore be working from his official residence but quarantined away from his family.

Those who accompanied the President on the trip to Namibia have also been placed under self-isolation, it says. The release says very strict preventative protocols were effected on the President prior to his departure, upon arrival in Namibia, during his stay and upon return.

It explains that the President undertook an emergency official trip to Namibia on March 21 to take advantage of the presence of other heads of state in the Namibian capital to discuss critical COVID-19 measures taken in countries sharing borders with Botswana. "The President took the view that a face to face meeting with his counterparts was necessary to discuss urgent border issues in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

The President recognised that while Botswana needs to keep regional borders open for passage of goods, the regional leaders must agree on reasonable restrictions as well.

There is, for instance, the need for consistency on the treatment of truckers bringing in essential supplies from the Republic of South Africa," says the release.

It says issues of immigration also emerged in the meeting.

The release says there is need to facilitate legal extension for those who cannot leave due to airline cancellations.

Issues of defense also emerged during the meeting in light of the need to police borders, it says noting that the closure of many crossing points would lead to desperation and illegal crossings.

<i>Source : BOPA</i>

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