NW Command Council considers provincial approach to implementing Level 3 regulations
Following the decision to move the country to adjusted Level 3 Lockdown early this week, the North West Provincial Coronavirus Command Council met last night to reflect on the provincial approach to managing the spread of the virus, including how the provincial government will coordinate the return to work in January. The Command Council also discussed how the province will respond swiftly to disasters that could emanate from the above average rainfalls expected during this period.
In welcoming reports from various departments including Social Development, Cooperative Governance, Human Settlements and Traditional Affairs, Community Safety and Transport Management, Agriculture and Rural Development, Education and Health, the Command Council agreed to locate all government activities responding to the surge within the District Development Model, and ensure that structures such as Community Policing Forum, Community Health Workers and Community Development Workers continue to play an essential role in curbing the spread.
The Command Council raised a concern about the continuing non-adherence to health protocols particularly at various post offices where Covid-19 social relief of distress grants are collected, and directed the law enforcement and compliance officers to closely monitor these areas during this period, and enforce compliance.
As all types of social gatherings are during alert level 3 prohibited, the law enforcement and compliance officers were also directed to monitor community behavior and adherence to the set regulations, including on the number of people attending funerals and adherence to the curfew hours.
With the number of hospital cases steadily increasing in Bojanala Platinum District which is now a hotspot, the Command Council received a report on the department of Health’s state of readiness to respond to the surge, including the continuous monitoring of hospitals capacity to admit patients.
Premier Prof Tebogo Job Mokgoro who is the Chairperson of the Provincial Command Council, emphasised the need for communities to adhere to the set alert level 3 regulations, saying the pressure that health workers are going through can be reduced if we could all stay home, respect all health protocols and observe the rules of the road when traveling during this holiday period.
The meeting also welcomed the cancellation of year-end events which were planned by the department of Arts, Culture, Sports and Recreation, this in response to the restriction imposed on all social gatherings during the adjusted alert level 3.
The Command Council welcomed a report by the department of Social Development on the appointment of additional Social Workers and Community Development Practitioners for COVID-19 related interventions, and Gender-Based Violence and Femicide activists for department’s 365 programmes. The department also reported on its readiness in so far as social relief of distress is concerned, saying additional food parcels have been arranged for distribution where needed across the four districts of the province.
The Command Council stressed the importance of public communication and awareness, saying reminding people that COVID-19 is upon us remains critical, and that, more than ever before, we have to maintain our vigilance and prevention behaviours.
Premier Mokgoro said the prevention measures which include the wearing of masks when in public spaces, washing of hands regularly or using an alcohol-based sanitizer and maintaining social distance, remain as critical now as they have ever been.
The Command Council virtual meetings are attended by Ministers and Deputy Ministers deployed to the province as National District Champions, the MECs, Chairperson of the Provincial House of Traditional Leaders, Chairperson of SALGA, SAPS, Heads of Department and Section 100 Administrators.
The Provincial Command Council will continue to meet on weekly basis to receive progress reports from various departments, including those from the District Command Councils.
Source: Government of South Africa