Nissan and WITS join hands against the COVID-19 battle
Supporting the Department of Health’s screening programme in Tshwane
ROSSLYN, Pretoria, 17 April 2020
Nissan Group of Africa joined forces with the University of Witwatersrand Reproductive Health and HIV Institute (WITS RHI) to support the Department of Health (DoH)’s COVID-19 screening programme in the City of Tshwane, in the Gauteng province.
The company made available 12 Nissan and Datsun sedan vehicles to WITS RHI employees who will be conducting COVID-19 screening in the communities of Soshanguve, Ga-Rankuwa, Winterveldt and Hammanskraal, as well as other areas north of the city in the Gauteng province. The programme kicked-off this week and will run until early May, or for as long as the national government deems necessary.
“Nissan Group of Africa is committed to President Ramaphosa’s call to fight this disease. We adopted the DoH project in Gauteng North as this is where most of our employees and their families reside, and we believe that a comprehensive screening programme is key in combating this disease and to offer support to fellow residents in north Gauteng,” says Shinkichi Izumi, Managing Director of Nissan Group of Africa.
The vehicles are branded in DoH, Nissan or Datsun and WITS RHI livery to make them clearly identifiable to the public and to encourage residents to be screened and obtain the necessary information and treatment if needed.
“WITS RHI is funded by the US Government through PEPFAR-Centers of Disease Control (CDC), and we support the Tshwane Health District to roll out HIV/TB treatment at grassroots levels in the communities of Tshwane. Joining the fight against COVID-19 is a logical result of our activities to fight communicable disease,” adds Dr Gloria Maimela, Director of Health Programmes at WITS RHI.
The DoH developed a screening schedule, and Nissan and WITS RHI will be using various community forums to inform the public of screening times and venues. Nissan is also using its SMS communication system with employees to share valid information in this regard.
“Even though our manufacturing plant in Rosslyn is not operational at the moment, we are busy with various projects to tackle this disease, and we will share more information in due course. However, the safety of our employees and associates is a key priority, so our operations will remain closed in line with the lockdown regime,” says Izumi.