#JUSTINE: ZRP Enforces Tighter Lockdown Measures

THE Zimbabwe Republic Police (ZRP) have announced more stricter lockdown measures following reports that certain individuals and businesses were now  operating  in  violation  of  Statutory  Instrument 10  of 2021 which  barred  all non  essential  service providers  to operate during the current Level (IV) of National Lockdown.

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According to a Memorundum  under the subject Tightening Of Enforcements And Issuance Of Business Confirmation And Exemption Letters addressed to addressed to all Officers Commanding Police Districts, Harare, there has been increasing cases of lockdown rules violations by companies and individuals.

“Some companies which are not in the category of essential service  such  as  Bata  Shoe  Company,  Bhola  Hardware, Furniture and Clothing shops, are conducting business on the  strength  of  letters  issued  by  the  Ministry  of  Industry, Commerce and International Trade. Commanders should take note of the following:- Companies  and  businesses  not  in  the  category  of essential  service  but  operating  should  close.

“This  is regardless  of  being  in possession  of  exemption  letters. The guiding principle is the Statutory Instrument 10 of 2021 which is very clear on which industry or service provider is exempted from National lockdown. No  vehicles  should  be  allowed  to  pass  a  checkpoint  if they are not in the category of essential services. Such vehicles  should  be  arrested  or made  to go  back  where they will be coming from.❖Funeral  gatherings  have  become  one  of  the  super spreaders  of  the  Corona  virus,  and  as  such,  the stipulated maximum number of thirty (30) mourners be strictly adhered to,” said the Memorundum.

The ZRP added that screening  of  deserving  travellers  during  curfew  times should  be  intensified,  allowing  passage  only  to  those providing essential services such as those in the sectors of   health   including   pharmacies,   security services, manufacturing, agriculture, mining, energy [ZESA], fuel industry and other related entities.

“For the avoidance of doubt, outlined below are some of the essential  services  exempted  from  National  Lockdown  and should be allowed to operate:- any health care service; any  service  relating  to  the  generation,  supply  and distribution of electricity, water, sewerage, sanitary; fire brigade or ambulance services; any service relating to the production, supply, delivery or distribution of food (in particular Supermarkets and food retail stores), fuel or coal (note that fuel includes gas); banking   Institutions,   Bureaux   de   changes,   money transfer services; any mining services;➢Any service relating to manufacturing;

“Communications   and   Telecommunication   services, including the internet;➢All Arms and Organs of the State engaged in providing security services and licenced Private Security services;➢Government Printer (Printflow Private Limited);➢The conduct of Agricultural activities on farms;➢The supply of Agricultural inputs and stock feeds; and➢The supply and distribution of veterinary requirements for  domesticated  farm  and  non-farm  animals  and  the dipping of cattle.”

Meanwhile, Public  transport  services  shall  be  restricted  to  those provided  by  ZUPCO,  Public  Service  Association  and omnibuses or other passenger service vehicles operated or chartered for carriage of essential services staff.

“Employees of manufacturers and persons employed in mining operations. The  conducting  of  public  examinations  at  Schools, Colleges,   Universities   or   other   Tertiary Education institutions in accordance with circulars issued by the ministries  responsible  for  primary,  secondary,  tertiary or technical education.”

The police also infomred members of the public that Cycling, walking  or  jogging  as  individuals  was permitted but  citizens must wear masks as they do so. Issuance of Exemption lettersAddresses  are  also  advised  that  the  Ministry  of  Industry, Commerce  and  International  Trade  has  allowed  respective Line  Ministries  to  issue  movementexemption  letter  to businesses.  This  has  been  necessitated  by  the  need  to quicken the process for the conveniences of companies.

Law enforcement  officers  manning  roadblocks  and  checkpoints should thus recognise letters issued by the respective Line Ministries provided the entities they work for are exempted by  law  from  lockdown.NB,  If  a  company  or  service  for which  an  exemption  letter  has  been  issued  is  NOT EXEMPTED by law, the bearer should not be allowed to pass  or  operated,  irrespective  of  who  has  issued  that letter.CurfewIt should also be noted that those providing critical services like  health,  ZESA,  telecommunications  (Telone),  security, carrying  cargo,  delivery  vehicles  for  food,  energy  [service stations], workers doing shifts for companies exempted from lockdown [with letters showing time of reporting on and off duty], are exempted from the curfew.

The point to consider is whether at that particular time of the night, is the person supposed to be going or coming from work.Commanders should ensure that operatives are thoroughly briefed on the contents of this memorandum.An Inspector should be deployed at busy roadblocks in big cities   so   that   correct   decisions   are   made.   At   other checkpoints, a Sergeant or Assistant Inspector should be in charge depending on the level of activities at that particular point.Addresses  are to  acknowledge  receipt  by 1400hours  on Tuesday26January 2021

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