President Hage Geingob

PRESIDENT Hage Geingob has announced that the Covid-19 lockdown will be extended from midnight on Friday, 17 April, to midnight on 4 May. The president said the country will effectively re-open on 5 May; movement within the whole country will be restricted until then.

Geingob said that all regions will thus be grouped into zones and added that the health of all Namibians remains a top priority.

“The current lockdown in the two regions (Khomas and Erongo) has not been efficient,” health minister Kalumbi Shangula said.

A country world lockdown is needed to curtail the further spread of the virus. Those who have been exposed must remain where they are, Shangula said.

He says there has been a breach of interventions with implications for potential community spread of the coronavirus within regions with confirmed cases, and a risk of wider spread in the entire country.

Shangula cited specific incidencts in which a confirmed case did not self-regulate as instructed, or used public transport while seeking healthcare for symptoms.

The president also called on all Namibians to remain calm and cooperate with authorities during the countrywide Covid-19 lockdown.

“Let’s be professional, these are not our enemies,” Geingob said.

Geingob said the second priority is to minimise the impact of Covid-19 on the economy.

Finance minister Iipumbu Shiimi says they are busy finalising an assessment on the impact of the lockdown on the Namibian economy, and it will be finalised today.

Justice minister Yvonne Dausab said movements around the country will require special movements across all regions from the extended lockdown period.

She emphasised that no unnecessary movement will be permitted outside people’s residences unless they need to buy essential goods or work under essential services.

The sale of alcohol remains prohibited.

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