The Botswana parliament has approved that the southern African country to go into state of emergency for a period of six months. The move was proposed by president Mokgweetsi Eric Keabetswe Masisi.
“I took advice from health professionals and that is what forms our approach. If we delay acting to combat this virus, the impact on us will be astronomical … our hospitals will not be able to cope,” Masisi said.
“We have no time to wait and see how the pandemic develops.”
“Botswana is still lacking in terms of resources, infrastructure and personnel that would be used to tackle the pandemic. That is the best choice to make given our level of development and the destruction we have seen Covid-19 causing that Bostwana embarks on a robust preventive strategy.”
“Our best defense shall always be our capacity to prevent; that is just a fact, If you think of beds that might be needed, we have a maximum of up about 150 ICU beds. When a model is developed, it is established that when we are really hit we would need up to 50 000 beds and approximately 2 000 ICU beds,” the president said.
“One highly-trained nurse would be needed for two ICU beds and a doctor for four ICU beds. We would quickly realise that we don’t have the personnel to do that,” Masisi said.
“This ailment spreads faster than the wildfire and that is why we prevention will always be our primary strategy,” he said.
The move faced resistance the main opposition party United Democratic Front Member which raised concern over the awarding of tenders during the state of emergency period.