The health ministry on Monday received a donation of personal protective equipment (PPE) worth N$2 million from Capricorn Group, Project HOPE Namibia, and FirstRand Namibia.
The donation was received by the Minister of Health and Social Services, Dr Kalumbi Shangula, at the Covid-19 Communication Centre to help in the nationwide effort to tackle the virus.
Project HOPE Namibia donated 75 000 surgical masks and 3 800 isolation gowns worth N$750 000. FirstRand Namibia donated 2 500 PPE worth N$810 000 and Capricorn Group donated medical supplies to the ministry of health with a combined value of N$500 000.
Shangula, when he received the donation, said the fight against Covid-19 cannot be managed single-handedly by the government:
“The state where we are now with clustered community transmission requires the full participation of every resident to observe the infection progression control measures to contain the pandemic.” The nation has thus far witnessed new cases in other parts of the country. Cases of Covid-19 have been reported in 12 regions, with the exception of Kavango West and Omaheke regions.
Shangula said this is a call for unity of purpose to combine forces and fight the pandemic by moving in the same direction and adhering to public health measures to contain the pandemic.
Erwin Tjipuka, the chief executive officer of FirstRand, said as a business they are concerned about the increase in the number of Covid-19 cases in Namibia and the negative effect the pandemic has on the Namibian economy at large.
The corporate started the FirstRand Health Optimisation in Pandemic Emergency (HOPE) fund in March 2020, to assist the government and its partners in mitigating the impact of Covid-19. Through its fund they donated the items.
“It is our hope that our donation and PPE kits will further assist in the prevention of the spread of Covid-19, ultimately contributing towards reviving our Namibian economy and society at large,” said Tjipuka.
Further, he said the supply of PPE kits is vital in ensuring healthcare workers operate in a safe environment and ensure the country stays productive in this time of crisis.
The chair of Project HOPE Namibia, Ingo Schneider, said a US-based relief and development organisation has partnered with Latter-day Saints charities to procure and ship PPE to Namibia to support Covid-19 response efforts through its local partner Project HOPE Namibia. Project HOPE Namibia is a non-profit organization that started operations in 2002. Schneider explained that Project HOPE US has been responding to the Covid-19 pandemic since January 2020 starting in Wuhan, China: “When sporadic cases started appearing globally, a decision was made to pivot the response globally including Namibia. The African package of response to the Covid-19 outbreak includes training of frontline healthcare workers, donations of PPE, complex case management support, and contact investigation and testing.”
Marlize Horn, Group Executive: Brand & Corporate Affairs, Capricorn Group, said this is their contribution to help the ministry in fighting the pandemic that is impacting all residents’ lives in so many ways: “Now is the time to work together and save lives, that should be our priority.”