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Indiscipline driving up COVID-19 infections in Zimbabwe

by Staff reporter
17 Jan 2021 at 13:32hrs | Views
THE government has raised a red flag over failure by Zimbabweans to respect the hard lockdown regulations as the country continues to battle rising Covid-19 infections and deaths.

This comes as Zimbabwe on Friday recorded 30 more deaths and 741 new infections as the second wave of the pandemic continues to spread. This also comes after Manicaland Provincial Affairs minister Ellen Gwaradzimba became the latest high-profile Zimbabwean on Friday to succumb to the deadly virus - amid soaring Covid-19 deaths and infections in the country.

Since January 5 when the health authorities announced 34 deaths in just 24 hours, the country has been recording fatalities in the double figures.

In her weekly update delivered yesterday, national chief Covid-19 coordinator in President Emmerson Mnangagwa's office Agnes Mahomva said indiscipline among citizens is driving up the numbers.

"…we need to comply with measures that worked very well to manage the first wave. We need to take this lockdown as seriously as we did with the first lockdown.

"Unfortunately, most people continue not to take it seriously which is worrying us. "A survey conducted by a team of global scientists in August 2020 confirmed that Zimbabwe's success in preparing and managing the first wave was mainly due to the stringent lockdown measures not only instated early in the epidemic but for the most part very well adhered to by individuals and communities.

"The current second wave started end of November 2020 towards the beginning of the festive season. "This is the time when the nation becomes complacent and we witness many super spread gatherings and events.

"The sudden surge a few weeks after Christmas did not come as a surprise," Mahomva said.

This comes as health experts have reiterated calls for a much tougher national lockdown, which they say should now be enforced by soldiers to curb the growing disregard of the current stay-at-home order by ordinary citizens.

Top Bulawayo-based medical doctor, Solwayo Ngwenya recently told our sister paper, the Daily News last week, that Zimbabweans had shown that they were not watchful enough, and hence the only solution was to force them to observe coronavirus rules.

"It is a matter of days that it will be evident that there is a need for stricter lockdown measures on the basis of the huge numbers of confirmed cases and deaths that the health sector is failing to cope with. Then, the need to elevate the lockdown to levels four and five, whereby people are restricted from leaving their homes, will be apparent.

"Soldiers will have to be brought in when we elevate the lockdown, and it will have to be harsher, where people are not to leave their homes without a valid reason. "My warning is that people must do all they can to avoid infection because once one has Covid-19, the chances of survival are decreasing, as seen through the lower recovery rate," a concerned Ngwenya said.

Source - dailynews