President Emmerson Mnangagwa has extended the national lockdown by a further 14 days saying the country has not met any of the conditions set by the World Health Organisation.
The lockdown will now end on the 3rd of May.
Mnangagwa said government is working on a plan to cascade Covid-19 testing to rural health centres so that every citizen can have access to testing facilities.
Mnangagwa said the mining sector will be allowed to resume operations during the 14-day Covid-19 lockdown extension. The manufacturing sector will be allowed “limited operations”.
What Mnangagwa said:
I announced the lockdown decision as part of decision to tackle #Covid19Zim. As I address you today more than two million people have been attacked by Covid-19 worldwide.
We have been conscious of the effects of the lockdown on the economy but we chose the route of abundant caution. The lockdown is not the panacea.
The national lockdown cannot be the strategy or is it going to be permanent. Gvt has embarked on expanded tests covering the whole country. This allows us to detect symptomatic cases.
All our institutions must become testing centres. We should increase the number of laboratories to ensure results come early.
More of our health institutions are being re-purposed for Covid-19. The aim is to increase the number of beds. We need adequate PPEs. Gvt will stop at nothing to ensure that hospitals are fully equipped.
The three week lockdown expires at midnight. Gvt has reviewed the situation in the country. Confirmed cases now at 25. We are now dealing with local transmission. More of our people are coming back home from affected countries.
The country is yet to reach conditions for lifting lockdown as prescribed by WHO. Infections should be under control for us to consider lifting the lockdown. Guided by this reality Gvt decided to extend lockdown by 14 days.
It is a necessary and an unavoidable decision in the circumstances we find ourselves in. Government is aware of the need to keep the economy running. Mining sector should resume Operations. I directed health and mining ministries to ensure screening before resumption of work.