AD criticizes Govt over lockdown

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By Mamello Mosaefane

Alliance for Democrats (AD) has raised concern over the 14 days nationwide total lockdown that came into effect today labelling it an “unplanned” move by the government.

At a press conference held today, Mahali Phamotse, AD’s Secretary General accused Prime Minister Moeketsi Majoro of imitating neighbouring South Africa in enforcing Covid-19 control measures and failing to address Lesotho with strategies that respond directly to its peculiar case.

She says the government is still unable to provide Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), sufficient ventilators to health care facilities, and proper treatment centres for covid-19 patients and food.

“Lesotho should address its own Covid-19 challenges which are very different from South Africa, the main being poverty” Phamotse stated, emphasizing the importance of independence in addressing the pandemic.

Phamotse says as a result of government’s lack of preparedness, many Basotho were subjected to long queues at borders forcing some to sleep at the border, while those who managed to cross faced multiple challenges.

Many Basotho are said to have also lost their jobs as they could not afford Covid-19 tests which would provide them clearance to cross the border.

AD claims the lockdown has been blindly introduced with no survival plan for the different groups of affected citizens.

The total lockdown is according to AD an imitative move from South Africa which was on the other hand able to introduce mitigation strategies for the survival of its citizens.

Prior to Parliament closure, Phamotse says the opposition through Tlohelang Aumane suggested the drawing-up of an economic recovery plan but that the government rejected it.

“Above all, the government’s service providing departments do not work towards one common goal despite the growing numbers of deaths” Phamotse said.

AD also blames the government for poor leadership and lack of responsibility; widely opening boarders for Basotho to come home for Christmas holidays from embattled South Africa without any strategies to curb the spread of Covid -19 upon their arrival.

“The government is therefore to blame for the most dangerous and easily spread second-wave of Covid-19 which led to the current total lockdown which we condemn due to lack of proper planning” AD maintains.

Phamotse added that many Basotho have as a result lost their jobs in South Africa, as they had no money for covid-19 testing, while some had their passports destroyed due to false statements by government that they could cross back home despite any form of documentation.

AD says the Prime Minister long lost direction during his finance ministerial position where not even a cent of the M700 million set aside to fight Covid-19 was ever used for this purpose as allocated.

The political party further accused the government of depending on donations from abroad as well as Lesotho businessmen support.

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