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Virus to impact tourism in NC

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“Contact should be avoided with anyone displaying cold or flu-like symptoms. Physical contact must be minimised where elbow greeting is used rather than shaking hands.”

NO ANNOUNCEMENT has been made regarding any changes to the programme of the Bloodhound Land Speed Record (LSR) that was set to take place at Hakskeen Pan towards the end of the year.

High-speed testing took place at Hakskeen Pan in November last year to beat the existing record of 1 228 kilometres per hour.

Northern Cape Department of Finance, Economic Development and Tourism spokesperson Ali Diteme said they expected confirmation this week, although there was no indication of any plans to cancel the event.

The MEC for Finance, Economic Development and Tourism, Maruping Lekwene, has meanwhile called for calm following the announcement by President Cyril Ramaphosa to institute measures to combat the Covid-19 pandemic.

Lekwene acknowledged that it would impact on the tourism industry in the Northern Cape as well as visitor’s arrivals and attendance at events.

“Kimberley Airport and Upington International Airport both recently won service awards in the category of ‘under two million passengers per year in Africa’ that was presented by the ASQ best airport in size and region. With this latest achievement our expected number of visitors to the Province will go down due to the outbreak of the coronavirus.”

Lekwene urged the tourism industry in the Northern Cape to do everything possible to safeguard travellers to the Province during this uncertain time.

“I also reiterate a call to our communities to remain calm and refrain from spreading fake news concerning the virus. The Northern Cape has not reported any positive coronavirus case thus far.”

He encouraged members of the public to wash their hands frequently with soap and water or hand sanitisers for at least 20 seconds, to cover their noses and mouth when coughing and sneezing into a tissue or flexed elbow.

“Contact should be avoided with anyone displaying cold or flu-like symptoms. Physical contact must be minimised where elbow greeting is used rather than shaking hands.”

Lekwene noted that with travel bans from foreign countries, the cancellation of visas, the prohibition of gatherings of more than 100 people, closure of ports and borders and the limiting of non-essential travel would also impact on the economy.