Cabinet directs ministries to help in Covid-19 fight
28 July 2020 | Government
The minister of information, communication and technology (MICT) Peya Mushelenga announced a number of cabinet decisions pertaining to the Erongo region.
He said that cabinet has taken note that active case search is yielding results, as more asymptomatic cases are identified, contacts traced and quarantined to curb the further spread of Covid-19.
“Multiple rapid response and special support teams and additional human resources have been deployed to the Erongo region. Cabinet has directed the ministry of health to fast-track the backlog of over 1500 samples due to increased swabbing in the Erongo region. The ministry has been directed to engage private service providers to assist with the testing of specimen samples.”
Mushelenga said that the ministry of health has been instructed to engage the Public Service Commission (PSC) to expedite the recruitment of additional health personnel to assist with Covid-19 response.
“Cabinet directed the ministry of health in consultation with the Erongo Regional Council to identify more quarantine and isolation facilities to accommodate the increasing number of suspected and positive Covid-19 cases.”
The ministry of works and transport has also been directed to avail 45 vehicles that were not yet delivered to the Security Cluster. These are part of 174 vehicles that were initially requested by the ministry of health.
Mushelenga said that the ministry of home affairs, immigration, safety and security must approach treasury for additional funding amounting to N$23 million for the Covid-19 operations.
He added: “The ministry of health in consultation with the Erongo Regional Council and the office of the governor have been directed to identify the total number of persons requiring Covid-19 food relief in the Erongo Region, and expedite the delivery of food donations to such persons.”
The ministry of home affairs has also been instructed to issue travel permits only for medical emergencies and the provision of essential services to and from Walvis Bay, Swakopmund and Arandis.
The minister said that the ministry of urban and rural development in collaboration with the local authorities of Walvis Bay, Swakopmund and Arandis has identified relocation sites to decongest informal settlements.
“As per the relocation action plan, an NHE plot in Twaloloka will accommodate 300 households, a municipal plot in Walvis Bay will accommodate 192 households, Farm 37 will cater for about 500 households, 50 households will be moved to urban mass housing dwellings in Walvis Bay on a permanent basis and 29 houses will be available under the Mass Housing project in Swakopmund.”
Cabinet also approved standard operating procedures (SOPs) related to the handling of persons who have died of infectious diseases such as Covid-19.
This was done to ensure burials are carried out procedurally and without exposure to infection while ensuring the dignity of remains of the deceased.