Wilderness Safaris this morning (April 29) delivered a consignment of COVID-19 related items to Seronga community. Seronga, Wilderness’ Vumbura Camp concession manager, Johan von Backstrom handed over the items to Kgosi Maeze Maeze of Seronga and the village’s COVID-19 response committee’s chairman Otukile Mutukwa. The items that were flown to Seronga by Wilderness Air included among others: sanitizers, sanitizer refills, facial tissues, toilet rolls and containers for self-sanitizing at public places.
Wilderness Safaris has also donated food hampers to families in Sankoyo recently as well as working in conjunction with Sanitize Maun and the District Commissioner’s office to transport and distribute sanitizers and masks to villages throughout Ngamiland. They have so far covered Mababe, Khwai, Shorobe, Matsaudi, Matlapana, Nxaraga, Komana, Toteng, Legothwana Sehitwa, Tsau, Semboyo, Makakung, Kareng, Bodibeng, Bothatogo, Somelo, Makalamabedi, Chanoga and Phuduhudu.
Two local companies have manufactured sanitising biobooths that can be installed in public places and help to contain the Coronavirus. The two companies - Afriwise and Loadnet Pty Ltd - based in Tlokweng, are already working under pressure to make booths for the domestic and export market, the latter being mostly neighboring countries.
A similar booth is used in India, Dubai, Russia and lately in Durban and South Africa. It is ideal to be placed at the entrances of shopping malls, supermarkets, banks, post offices, border posts, railway stations, airports and all other places where people have access. The first locally produced booths have been installed at Diagnofirm firm medical laboratories in Gaborone and one at Jwaneng mine.
The booths use a water-based sanitiser which kills 99.9 percent of germs and stays on clothes and shoes for four (4) days. Botswana Guardian has it on good authority that the booth has been approved by the Ministry of Health and Wellness as a tool to be used in the containment of the COVID-19.
Project manager for the joint project Julio Ferreira said the booth is a first of its kind 100 percent local product with potential of creating employment, contributing to manufacturing and make an entry into the medical engineering world. He said the market response is encouraging as Debswana Diamond Company has placed an order for 16 units for their Jwaneng mine.
Ferreira said they started the design and production at their Tlokweng workshop before the 28th day lockdown. They invited the Ministry of Health for a demonstration at the workshop. "They were impressed and we also invited CEDA for a demonstration."
He said CEDA appreciated the uniqueness and importance of the project. “We are expecting funding to buy materials to embark on mass production. Finance is our main challenge," he said. He said they are currently producing 10 units a day but will increase capacity to work on a 24 hour cycle to meet demand.
The positive thing is that all materials used in production are available locally at hardwares, he said. Ferreira said the booth is a locally made product designed and made from scratch, adding that they have received enquiries from Namibia and South Africa.