Harare, July 14, 2020 (New Ziana) – Government said on Tuesday further re-opening of the economy has been put on hold, with localised lockdowns for Covid-19 hotspot areas set to be introduced as confirmed cases continue to spike.
On March 30 this year President Emmerson Mnangagwa declared a total Covid-19 lockdown in Zimbabwe for an initial 21 days to better prepare the country to combat the pandemic which had started wrecking havoc throughout the world.
The measures were later relaxed as the government sought to balance health and economic interests, with the country currently under level 2 of the lockdown for an indefinite period.
As at Monday, Zimbabwe had 1 034 confirmed cases of Covid-19 including 19 deaths since the onset of the outbreak on 20 March 2020.
Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister, Monica Mutsvangwa told a post Cabinet briefing current restrictions will be tightened pending a review due soon, by President Mnangagwa.
“The current lockdown restrictions will be tightened while localised lockdowns will be introduced in hotspot areas and further opening up of the economy at this point is halted,” Mutsvangwa said.
Cities of Harare and Bulawayo have recorded the most infection cases.
Mutsvangwa said testing will be intensified in “communities with high cases of local transmission.”
“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,” she said.
Mutsvangwa said government will permit travel within cities but “shall have the sole responsibility for intercity travel for those that really require to travel especially those who are seeking medical attention.”
Re-opening of schools, which was scheduled for end of this month, was also postponed to allow for further consultations.