Directions for the Prevention of the Spread of COVID-19

Government Notice 147 of 2020

The Director of Health Services hereby gives the following direction under section 25 of the Public Health Act —

1. Most effective prevention

The most effective prevention of transmission of COVID-19 is frequent hand wash with clean water and soap for at least 40 seconds.

2. Travel

(a)All persons coming to Botswana from high risk countries (as defined by the World Health Organization (WHO)) or any other country, shall not be allowed entry into Botswana until further notice;(b)Issuance of Visa at Ports of entry and at all Embassies for any person from high risk areas is suspended with immediate effect until further notice;(c)Current visas of persons from high risk countries are cancelled with immediate effect until further notice;(d)International travel by all Government employees, parastatals and State owned entities is suspended with immediate effect until further notice;(e)All Government, parastatals and State owned entities’ international meetings and conferences are cancelled until further notice; and(f)All public gatherings of more than 10 people is prohibited. For the purpose of this paragraph, public gathering includes but is not limited to —(i)religious activities,(ii)sports events,(iii)conferences,(iv)wedding celebrations,(v)music concerts,(vi)parties,(vii)cinemas; or(viii)any other activity or place where the public gathers (with the exception provided under the heading “Social distancing”),Provided that the 10 people gathering limit shall not apply to a meeting of Cabinet or Parliament or any other Government structure to help fight COVID-19 but issues of social distancing shall be strictly adhered to.

3. Suspension of licences

The public is advised that the following licenses have been suspended until further notice —(a)a betting licence;(b)a bingo licence;(c)a bingo machine licence;(d)a bookmaker’s licence;(e)a casino licence;(f)a gambling establishment licence;(g)a gambling machine licence;(h)a lottery licence;(i)a lottery machine licence;(j)a racing licence;(k)a testing agent licence;(l)a totalisator licence;(m)an amusement arcade;(n)hair or beauty parlour;(o)gymnasium; and(p)cross border passenger transport road permit.

4. Social distancing

(a)The public shall maintain a maximum of 25 individuals and a distance of 1 – 2 metres between individual persons in —(i)Banks,(ii)Restaurants, including take-away restaurants,(iii)Supermarkets/shops,(iv)Pharmacies,(v)Post offices,(vi)Government service departments, and(vii)Memorial services;(b)The public shall maintain a maximum of 50 individuals and a distance of 1 – 2 metres between individual persons during funerals proceedings.(c)Funerals and memorial services shall not last more than 2 hours and food shall not be provided thereat (with the exception of the family members);(d)Visits to rehabilitation centres including prisons, refugee camp or centre for illegal immigrants are not allowed (with exceptions to consulting Attorneys).

5. General advice to the public —

(a)To frequently wash hands with soap and clean water;(b)To postpone all non-essential travel within Botswana;(c)To ensure easy access to clean water and soap for hand washing at any place referred to at paragraph 4 above;(d)To ensure strict hand washing and surface cleaning for all equipment used during burial;(e)To clean high touch areas with disinfectants. (Examples of high touch arrears are doors, elevators, counters, etc.)(f)To cover the nose and mouth with a tissue or flexed elbow when sneezing or coughing;(g)To avoid direct contact with anyone with cold or flu symptoms;(h)To avoid handshakes, hugs and kisses when greeting each other; and(i)To ensure continued safety of other users of health facilities, individuals who have cold or flu symptoms (cough, fever, sore throat) and have had contact with returning travelers shall —(i)Call the numbers 997, 3632756 /3632757/3632773;(ii)Not use public transport; and(iii)If using private vehicle or on foot, should alert health facility officers on arrival before entering facility.(j)Information from any other source other than the Director of Health Service and the World Health Organization should not be relied on by the public as credible and correct information.(k)The Directions for the prevention of the spread of COVID-19 dated 20th March, 2020 published as Government Notice No. 128 of 2020 are hereby revoked.Dr. M. Tshipayagae,Director of Health Services.

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