The Covid-19 JOC meeting minutes – Ndlambe – as at 16.6.2020

Ndlambe Municipality

NDLAMBE MUNICIPALITY COVID-19 JOINT OPERATIONS
COMMITTEE

The Covid-19 JOC meeting led by Mayor Kululwa Ncamiso earlier today revealed that over 34,000 people have been screened in Ndlambe. Five people have tested positive, two have recovered and the three active cases are in isolation. There is presently a delay of approximately 2-3 weeks in getting results back from NHLS.

Mayor Ncamiso stressed the importance of respecting victims of Covid-19, and cautioned members of the community against using social media as a platform to disclose patients’ identity. These actions are unkind, irresponsible and infringe on a patient’s right to confidentiality, and has the potential to create unnecessary panic. The Mayor went on to stress that our best defence against contracting the virus is to regularly wash our hands with soap and water, wear a mask in public, stay home where possible and practice social distancing.

Members of the JOC are in constant contact via a WhatsApp group and meet once a week on a digital platform to discuss pertinent matters, and to follow up on outstanding issues. Each member of the JOC is required to submit a report prior to the weekly meeting. The reports are collated and form part of a combined submission to the District and provincial disaster management teams.

Health:

Covid-19 Educational billboards have been erected in Port Alfred and Alexandria. The Municipality continues to educate the community by means of loud-hailing through townships and informal settlements. The Municipality also continues to assist the Dept of Health by sanitising clinics as required. All clinics currently have sufficient stocks of PPE – monitored on a daily basis. Childhood immunisations continue to be administered at clinics.

Municipal Manager, Adv Dumezweni confirmed that the base of the water tank and repairs to the fence of the Station Hill Clinic are being attended to by the Municipality on behalf of the Dept of Health, and that the repair of a temporary structure at Wentzel Park Clinic has been completed.

It was confirmed that the Dept of Health will make three scooters available for Ndlambe. They will be used to distribute medicines for patients on chronic treatment, to follow up on chronic patients who have defaulted in their treatment, and for tracing COVID contacts.

Business Recovery Think Tank:

The protracted lockdown has dealt a devastating blow to Ndlambe’s tourism reliant economy. The Municipality teamed up with business to assess the economic effects of lockdown, and to explore quick wins, and medium/long term economic revival plans.

In terms of quick-win solutions, key factors were discussed:

– Water Security: The procurement of a reliable R/O plant along the Kowie River was welcomed.
This plant has been built off-site and is ready for installation, pending a court judgement on 18 June. It is expected that the plant will be fully operational within 8-10 weeks. At the same time, dam levels are continuously monitored and the Sarel Hayward Dam is presently over 50% full.

– Food Security: The pandemic has resulted in increased job losses, and thanks to a caring community the spirit of Ubuntu has prevailed by providing food parcel relief to the most vulnerable. However, in the long-term entrepreneurial programmes to assist our communities are to be engineered.

– Job Security: Businesses are being challenged to look at new and innovative ways of conducting business, and this is particularly true in the hospitality sector. Many businesses are having to be reimagined, and the need for Municipal assistance to fast track building plan approval to ensure continuity of business was discussed.

– Investor Confidence: Key to investor confidence and uplifting community morale, is the appearance of well-maintained pavements, parks, and cut verges. It was acknowledged that there have always been compliments about the cleanliness of the towns, what is important is to maintain this standard and to rack it up by ensuring that the overall appearance of towns is of an excellent and attractive standard. Property investment is excellent value in the Eastern Cape and it was agreed that there is scope to market Ndlambe’s lifestyle to business people.

– Marketing: Tourism’s role in ensuring that the area is well marketed is critical. Digital marketing platforms are in demand and being exploited. Immediate marketing strategies will focus on day trips, weekend packages, and tours as domestic tourism will be the first to recover. The effects of signature sporting events being cancelled due to the pandemic have been felt. Ways of attracting more sporting and cultural events in Ndlambe needs to be explored.

Continuing the Spirit of Ubuntu: The role played by the community in assisting vulnerable members of our society is heartwarming, and the Mayor wishes to thank each and every person who has donated money, goods, or their time and expertise in this time of crisis. As the effects of the pandemic are not over yet, there is an appeal to members of the public to continue to donate to this fund, managed by Sunshine Coast Tourism. Any queries may be directed to Sandy Birch and Dr. Wouter
Hensens. The banking details for Sunshine Coast Tourism is: First National Bank (FNB). Port Alfred Branch and account number 62310501350. Reference: Covid19.

MEDIA RELEASE : 16 JUNE 2020
SUNSHINE COAST TOURISM ON BEHALF OF MAYOR KHULULWA NCAMISO

 

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