Sunday, May 19, 2024
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Covid-19 hits textile factories


…as Chinese worker is found dead

Mafa Moleko

Textile workers plying their trades at the Chinese owned textile factory, Nein Hsing have been hit by the scourge of Covid-19 as one Chinese succumbed to the pandemic, Newsday has learnt.

This publication was reliably informed by the Secretary General of Lentsoe La Sechaba a Workers’ Union, Monaheng Mokaoane, that one Chinese national was found dead in his room earlier this week after being diagnosed with Covid-19 which he said it puts the workers’ health and welfare at a devastating position and fears that they might be infected too.

Although Mokaoane could not reveal a number of infected workers, he told this reporter that some labourers have been granted two weeks of sick leave following consistent swelling Covid-19 cases. This he said was made with the initiative to give the workers a chance to quarantine themselves.   

“There are Basotho people working with the infected Chinese nationals and they are very close to them, they told other workers that the Chinese was found dead in his room,” he said.

He said they discovered this after the deceased failed to show up for work despite their numerous attempts to knock at his door to alert him, but the latter said he was summing-up his preparations, only to learn later that he was no more. 

He continued that more than two Chinese persons at Pressure textile factory were also reported dead after being diagnosed with Covid-19.

“We also suspect that there are more of them who are sick and yet we think they are censored that information,” He said.

He mentioned that even though the news of other instances have witnesses, the factory has only confirmed the death of one person.

He added that, “There are some workers here who are given sick leaves of two weeks while others are given more than that, while some said they were told that they should quarantine themselves,” he said.

“This shows that some of workers might be positive it is just that signs have not yet manifested,” he said.

He urged the government to take a swift reaction by vaccinating the workers to hurdle the spread of the virus.

 â€œWe are concerned that if vaccine does not move faster to the workers they might be infected since they still get in contact with the Chinese,” he said.

He further explained that there are workers who are cleaning in the rooms of the Chinese and are at the risk of being infected if the government delays the vaccine rollout.

On the same token, he further stated that the unions suggested a closure of factories to allow workers remain at home for some time but the problem was that workers are not willing to stay at home without work.

For his part, the National Council of Trade Union (NACTU) Secretary General TÅ¡epang Makakola said they heard from some of the workers about the Chinese who were reported dead from Pressure textile factory.

“A number of them are said to have been dead with signs of Covid-19, Nein Hsing reported that there are people who died from the pandemic,” he said.

“We suspect that the sick Chinese are still interacting with the employees and that could be the reason leading to the deaths of some workers who are being reported to have died from their homes,” he said.

Meanwhile, The National Covid-19 Secretariat (NACOSEC) Communication expert Mateboho Mosebekoa said they know nothing about the upsurge of cases at the firm.

“We are not able to comment on this because we do not know where the information comes from, we first need to know the sources and trace the information so that we can know how to handle it,” she said.

This publication attempted to get the side of Nien Hsing management to no avail. However, after a number of attempts factory’s human Resource Mrs Pea declined to comment citing that she is not privy to the information.

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