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Covid-19 Taskforce targets rural folk

by Staff reporter
29 Mar 2020 at 07:41hrs | Views
THE Ad-Hoc Inter-Ministerial Taskforce on the Covid-19 outbreak is set to engage village heads in the country through mobile phones to spread educational messages about the disease, a member of the taskforce team has said.

The taskforce team appointed by President Mnangagwa comprises 11 Cabinet Ministers and is working with the Civil Protection Unit (CPU) which has the requisite geographical spread and representation for maximum, effective, collective response and action as displayed in the management of the Cyclone Idai disaster.

The public has been exposed to some lies around the disease and worse villagers who have limited access to information have been made to consume information from rumours.

In a telephone interview, Minister of Environment, Climate, Tourism and Hospitality Industry Nqobizitha Mangaliso Ndlovu who is part of the taskforce team told Sunday News that they will use social media platforms and SMS platforms to educate and update the nation on the pandemic.

"As a taskforce team, we are obliged to keep the citizens informed of the pandemic and as we cannot do so through holding meetings or gatherings, we will be using social media platforms. For villagers who mostly have no access to the Internet we will be sending messages and strategies to the local leaderships that include village heads on how they can spread the message in their communities. There are over 25 000 village heads countrywide thus we are confident that the educational messages and updates will reach the final consumer."

Minister Ndlovu who is also Bulilima East Member of Parliament urged his colleagues nationwide not to take advantage of the situation by holding rallies thereby putting the lives of the public at risk.

"In such kind of situations, MPs tend to take advantage and hold meetings in their constituencies under the pretext of educating the public of the disaster but that should not happen at all cost.

"Gatherings are not allowed as of now but they can use other mechanisms like the social media," he said.

President Mnangagwa recently declared Covid-19 a National Disaster and banned public gatherings of over 50 people.

On Friday, he declared a national lockdown in the country with effect from midnight today in order to contain the spread of Covid-19 which has infected more than 500 000 people worldwide.

Source - sundaymail