Government has restored the use of exemption mechanisms which were used during the first lockdown in 2020 to contain the spread of coronavirus which has seen the country registering a rapid surge in new infections.
This came out of the post cabinet briefing that was held today where government revealed that it will impose stiffer penalties for violations of Covid 19 restrictions.
Speaking at the briefing, Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Monica Mutsvagwa said a total of 8 042 cases were recorded during the period under review, compared to 3 882 reported the previous week.
“The nation is informed that the surge reported the previous week continued showing a 107% increase in new cases.
” As you might be aware the entire country is now under Level 4 lockdown, following the surge in COVID-19 cases. The worst affected provinces are Mashonaland West (2 114), Mashonaland Central (2 957); Harare Metropolitan (1 041) Mashonaland East (847), and Midlands (848),” said Mutsvangwa.
“The nation is advised that the exemption mechanism which were used during the first lockdown in 2020 will be reactivated with immediate effect.
“Stiffer penalties will be imposed for violations of COVID-19 restrictions, including the withdrawal of business operating licences,” she said.
Mutsvangwa also revealed that government is making preparations to ensure that conditions for the re – opening of schools are safe.
“In preparation for the opening of schools for the Second Term, the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education, in collaboration with the Ministry of Health and Child Care, has instituted the following contingency measures :
a) Inspection visits being carried out to assess the state of preparedness at all boarding schools, high enrolment day schools and schools with very limited infrastructure;
b) Ensuring adequate WASH provisions at every school;
c) Completion of COVID-19 Infection Prevention and Control training workshops for teaching and non-teaching staff;
d) Confirmation of COVID-19 essential supplies in all districts, ” she said.
She also revealed that the government will channel ZW$368.2 million towards reinforcing its efforts to contain the spread of Covid 19