Gaborone, Botswana’s capital city, was on Thursday night placed under total lockdown for two weeks following an “unexpected turn” in new COVID-19 cases.
Lemogang Kwape, the minister of health and wellness, made the announcement in a televised public address via the Botswana Television.
He said the city will go under lockdown from midnight.
This follows an announcement of 30 new cases in the last 24 hours in a city of an estimated 231, 000 people, he said.
“During the course of this week, the disease has taken an unexpected turn. This now requires us to place the greater Gaborone COVID-19 zone under lockdown for a minimum period of two weeks,” said Kwape.
Kwape said that two weeks is enough to enable health authorities to contain the disease.
With the advice of the presidential COVID-19 task force team, Kwape said the government has made the decision to lockdown the greater Gaborone.
Only essential service providers will operate at 25 percent capacity, he said.
“There will be no movement within the greater Gaborone zone without a movement permit,” said Kwape.
“It will take great vigilance and discipline to ensure that “our containment efforts bear fruit and normalize the situation,” he said.
Botswana has registered 804 confirmed COVID-19 local cases and two deaths.