#COVID-19: Zim Tightens Lockdown, Schools Reopening Deferred, Economy Reopening Halted

GOVERNMENT has announced tighter lockdwon restrictions in the wake of spiking COVID-19 infections and deaths.

By Michael Gwarisa

This was revealed by Information, publicity and broadcasting services minister, Honorable Monica Mutsvangwa during a pots cabinet media briefing today.

“Cabinet is disturbed by the spike in COVID-19 locally transmitted cases and the number of deaths recorded. To curb the increase in transmissions as well as deaths from COVID-19, the following measures were adopted: (a) that the current lockdown restrictions will be tightened, while localised lockdowns are introduced in hotspot areas and further opening up of the economy is halted; (b)that testing in communities with high cases of local transmission such as Bulawayo will be increased; (c) that the re-opening of schools shall be deferred pending a review of the situation, while the writing of public examinations continues;(d)that private schools that have already opened without permission will be penalized; (e) that Government shall have the sole responsibility for inter-city travel for those that really require to travel especially to seek medical attention; and (f) that two (2) buses will be availed to transport those that test positive from Beitbridge to their respective provincial isolation centres.”

She added that cabinet also noted and approved the ongoing restructuring of the Ministry of Health and Child Care. She however expressed displeasure following information that members of Apostolic sects gathred in Manicaland in their numbers for the annual conference.

“Cabinet further noted with concern that some members of some religious sects have gathered in their numbers in Manicaland Province for their yearly retreat, in contravention of COVID-19 regulations that prohibit gatherings of more than fifty (50) people. This poses high risk to the spread of COVID-19. Accordingly, Cabinet directed that the gathering should disperse forthwith.

“Let me also take this opportunity to report that His Excellency the President will announce comprehensive measures on the way forward regarding the country’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak.”

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