Botswana’s 48-day lockdown ended at midnight Wednesday after gradually relaxing restrictions aimed at slowing the spread of the coronavirus in the diamond-rich southern African country.
All businesses and schools are now cleared to reopen under government guidelines, including individual temperature checks, use of face masks, and regular sanitizing.
COVID-19 Task Force Coordinator Dr. Kereng Masupu said in a news briefing that depending on the coronavirus disease pattern, a return to lockdown will remain an option.
Meantime, people returning home to Botswana will undergo mandatory quarantine and the ban of foreign visitors remains in place.
Botswana confirmed 29 COVID-19 infections and one death.
Reuter’s news agency said Botswana's government set aside more than $400 million to help absorb the economic impact of businesses suspending operations, including the prized diamond industry, which had no buyers coming into the country because of travel restrictions.