CABINET has announced a phased reopening of its land boarders to be effective December, 1 2020.
By Michael Gwarisa
Briefing a post cabinet media briefing, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Senator Monica Mutsvangwa said the phased opening of the boarders will be done while further assessment is being undertaken with regard to preparations for handling public passenger transport.
Cabinet resolved that the opening of border posts be phased, beginning with Beitbridge, Plumtree, Victoria Falls, Chirundu, Nyamapanda and Forbes. The borders will open first to private passenger vehicles and pedestrian traffic as from 1st December 2020, while further assessment is being undertaken with regard to preparations for handling public passenger transport.
“Cabinet wishes to inform the public that border operating hours are being fixed between 0600 and 1800 hours until further assessment of the situation. Curfew hours are being extended beyond the current 2000 hours to 2200 hours for the convenience of those who are cleared late at ports of entry. This will be subject to gazetting,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.
She added that the nation that Government is still receiving invaluable assistance from co-operating partners as efforts to bring the COVID-19 outbreak under control continue.
“On this very positive note, the Government of Japan is supporting Zimbabwe in equipping four (4) central and eight (8) Provincial hospitals with state-of the-art medical equipment comprising bedside intensive Care Unit monitors, an ultrasound scope, operation and examination equipment, a portable X-ray system, bedside Coronary Care Unit monitors, emergency ventilators, electrocardiographs, an anaesthesia workstation, and artificial resuscitators.
“The equipment will soon be distributed to Parirenyatwa, Sally Mugabe, Mpilo and United Bulawayo Central Hospitals, and to Bindura, Chinhoyi, Gwanda, Gweru, Kadoma, Marondera, Masvingo and Mutare Provincial Hospitals. The support from Japan will assist Zimbabwe in ensuring a healthy nation that can withstand the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Meanwhile, as at 23 October 2020, Zimbabwe’s cumulative COVID-19 cases had increased to eight thousand two hundred and fiftyseven, (8 257) out of which six thousand eight hundred and forty-nine (6849) cases were attributed to local transmission.
“Once again, Cabinet noted that there were seven thousand seven hundred and seventy-one (7771) recoveries, reflecting a 94 percent recovery rate, which is quite remarkable. The death toll now stands at two hundred and thirty-six (36) deaths. New cases for week 42 stood at one hundred and fifty eight (158), reflecting an increase from the one hundred and five (105) recorded in week 41.