MDC Alliance blasts govt over shoddy lockdown preps


The Movement for Democratic Change-Alliance (MDC-A) has accused the government of not consulting widely on the current lockdown with reports that the vulnerable communities are starving in their homes.

By Phyllis Mbanje

The party said the measure, which was aimed at halting further spread of the new coronavirus, was ill planned and void of multi sectoral consultations.

“People have been locked in without basic commodities and we are beginning to see chaotic scenes at shops almost degenerating into riots,” the party’s secretary for health, Henry Madzorera, said in a statement on the COVID-19 preparedness and response plan.

Madzorera said the resultant crowding at the shops created “fertile ground for [the] rapid COVID-19 spread”.

“But they are being forced by the government to choose between death from COVID-19 or death from hunger.

“Most people would rather take their chance with Covid 19, ” he said.

MDC-A blasted the government for wasting resources on aimless things like luxury cars for officials instead of grain which is scarce.

“The government is advised to engage the healthcare professionals in all decision making and policy formulation.

The party also called for the provision of potable water.

“The emphasis being given to sanitisers in government messaging is disproportionate. They should do everything possible to ensure that clean potable water is available,” said Madzorera.

He said while the majority complied with the terms of the lockdown, the government had not planned for the poor.

Meanwhile the party has also called for more robust testing and investigation of unexplained community deaths.

They also demanded adequate personal protective equipment  (PPE) for the rapid response team and frontline health workers.

The party said they were concerned about the situation at various ports of entry.

“There are reports of people walking across the border without being screened by a port health official and without [their] details being taken,” said Madzorera.