By Sma Phethoka

Quthing Red Cross Division distributed food items to 40 most vulnerable Urban Council street vendors from Upper and Lower Moyeni yesterday on April 8th, 2020.

According to the Divisional Secretary Ms Lieketseng Masunyane, the food items  included: 12.5 kg maize meal, 2l cooking oil, salt, 2kg beans hygiene kits comprising of sanitary pads, washing powder as well as tooth paste.

“The donation is from Quthing Red Cross Division to the tune of M10,000. The Divisional Committee saw the need and decided to lend a helping hand to the vulnerable bus stop vendors”, Lieketseng said.

In selecting the beneficiaries, Quthing Secretary indicated that the Ministry of Small Businesses provided the number of small retailers who are adversely affected by the lockdown. Masunyane further stated that the Quthing Urban Council  was consulted and the committee of the vendors.

“It was stated that some people used to sell perishable goods and food items have either consumed their stock or it is spoiled due to the lockdown,” Masunyane indicated.  She further indicated that in collaboration with the Urban Council Committee Representatives, they were able to come up with at least forty business people who were said to be adversely affected by the lock-down.

The street vendors expressed their gratitude saying not only have they lost  their stock but they doubt they will be able to recover after the lock-down and requested the government come to their rescue.

Gathered people who also respected Social Distancing were given a talk on how to protect themselves against COVID-19.

Present at the handing over were the President of LRCS, District Administrator Quthing, the Secretary General, the Divisional Committee and members.

This is just the tip of the iceberg, according to the Spokesperson of Khathang Tema Baitsukuli Mr lebitsa who said although they are grateful for the gesture there are still many more in dire need.

“Maseru alone has about 500 vulnerable vendors who are already feeling the impact of the COVID19 lock down “, he stated.

As a humanitarian gesture in these times of lock-downs, the Society will work hand in hand with Maseru Division to ensure that food items are bought for the street vendors of Maseru, says Mr Kopano Masilo, the Secretary General of the Society.

Lesotho Red Cross Society is appealing to the business community and people of goodwill to support the Society in alleviating human suffering to the most vulnerable people, especially the vendors, orphanages and homeless.

The funds to be used will be taken from the Donation Boxes that are placed at strategic places in Maseru and other districts.