The Development Bank of Southern Africa (DBSA) has launched its R150m COVID-19 response programmes in South Africa and the SADC region.“We are providing support to various activities that will bolster national and local government capacity to manage the ongoing response, save lives and help ensure that the South African and SADC economies will recover after the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Patrick Dlamini, Chief Executive Officer. The funding allocation will ensure that the National Disaster Management Centre is supported strongly as government continues to mitigate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Over a number of weeks, the DBSA will be delivering the varied support to the country’s coordinated effort. Already, R2.4m worth of PPE for frontline medical staff has been delivered to the Department of Health on 3rd July 2020 in partnership with German DFI, KfW Development Bank. The funding will provide mobile testing units in 25 district municipalities across 7 provinces (Gauteng, Eastern Cape, North West, KwaZulu Natal, Free State, Limpopo and Mpumalanga).
There will also be support for the local production and supply of ventilators to public hospitals across the country.Along with these, isolation pods and medical beds will be distributed to identified vulnerable and strained communities. Some communities will also receive basic services such as water and sanitation infrastructure and electricity. A collaborative private-public sector approach was followed to identify short-term urgent humanitarian programmes to cushion the most vulnerable communities. The long-term growth-inducing initiatives will address COVID-19’s adverse impact while meeting the objectives of the bank. These include continuing to develop new infrastructure in order to help achieve sustainable just transition and equality in South Africa and the rest of the African continent. “While it is still unclear what the final, full impact of the pandemic will be, we believe that it is only through our collective efforts and our partnerships, that we will be truly able to build a clear pathway towards a renewed and inclusive economy and society,” Dlamini concluded.