BY RICHARD MUPONDE
PRESIDENT Emmerson Mnangagwa yesterday said he would review the current lockdown measures next week and announce how the country would proceed with its fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.
The country is currently on level four national lockdown which was first imposed as a 30-day nationwide measure on January 5 this year following a spike in COVID 19 cases and was further extended to February 15.
Zimbabwe is battling a second wave of infections which has seen a number of high-profile people in all spheres of life succumbing to the dreaded virus.
In his address to the first Political Actors Dialogue meeting for 2021 held virtually at State House, Mnangagwa said his decisions on COVID-19 measures will be informed by scientific data and recommendations from health experts.
“In the coming week, I will be announcing how we are proceeding with regards to the lockdown,” Mnangagwa said.
“This will be informed by scientific data and recommendations from our health experts.”
Mnangagwa noted that the number of new infections and deaths had been receding over the last fortnight, adding that the pandemic had dealt a major blow to the government which has to date lost four ministers and several senior officials to the disease.
The country has to date recorded
34 949 COVID-19 cases, with 1 382 deaths.
More than half of the total number of infections and deaths were recorded in January alone.
Mnangagwa said the nation would take delivery of the first batch of COVID-19 vaccines from China on Monday.
“In spite of this development, we should never drop our guard. The December 2020 to mid-January 2021 infection spikes taught us that we must remain vigilant and alert for our own safety and that of others,” he said.
China has donated 200 000 doses of COVID 19 vaccines on top of the 600 000 doses purchased by the government with frontline healthcare workers, the elderly and those with underlying conditions, legislators, security forces and government workers being the first priority.
Zimbabwe aims to inoculate at least 60% of the population, which translates to about 10 million in order to achieve herd immunity.
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