Zim COVID-19 Restrictions Revert To Factory Settings

CITIZENS and employees will with immediate effect be required to produce exemption letters from their employers at security checkpoints for them to be granted passage into town.

By Staff Reporter

Briefing Journalists during a Post Cabinet Media Briefing, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services minister, Senator Monica Mutsvangwa said the COVID-19 situation in the country had moved to another level and required stern measures.

Given the above challenges, Cabinet has directed that Treasury urgently releases the first tranche of ZW$368.2 million it had committed towards funding the enforcement of Level 4 lockdown measures. This will reinforce the current efforts of containing the spread of COVID-19.

“The nation is advised that the exemption mechanism which were used during the first lockdown in 2020 will be reactivated with immediate effect. Stiffer penalties will be imposed for violations of COVID-19 restrictions, including the withdrawal of business operating licences,” said Minister Mutsvangwa.

She added as at  4 July, 2021, Zimbabwe’s cumulative COVID-19 cases stood at 54 474, with 40 239 recoveries and 1 878 deaths. The recovery rate stands at 74%, with 97% of COVID-19 positive cases being attributable to local transmission. The number of active cases stands at 12 357.

“The nation is informed that the surge reported the previous week continued, with a total of 8 042 cases recorded during the period under review, compared to 3 882 reported the previous week. This represents a 107% increase. As you might be aware the entire country is now under Level 4 lockdown, following the surge in COVID-19 cases. The worst affected provinces are Mashonaland West (2 114), Mashonaland Central (2 957); Harare Metropolitan (1 041) Mashonaland East (847), and Midlands (848).”

Regarding case management, infection, prevention and control, she said  the Ministry of Health and Child Care remains seized with managing COVID-19 cases detected in different parts of the country. Companies and Universities have enough raw materials to increase production of PPE stocks and medicines which are used to manage COVID-19 symptoms.

Meanwhile, Minister Mutsvangwa said preparations for reopening of schools for the second term were ongoing.

“With regard to primary and secondary education, the nation is advised that in preparation for the opening of schools for the Second Term, the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Child Care, has instituted the following contingency measures :

“a) Inspection visits being carried out to assess the state of preparedness at all boarding schools, high enrolment day schools and schools with very limited infrastructure;
b) Ensuring adequate WASH provisions at every school;
c) Completion of COVID-19 Infection Prevention and Control training workshops for teaching and non-teaching staff;
d) Confirmation of COVID-19 essential supplies in all districts.

The Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education is working on modalities to enable a blend of face-to-face classroom learning, remote learning at home and in communities, as well as alternative learning platforms, such as e-learning, radio and television.”



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