Zimbabwe on Monday gazetted the new Public Health (Covid-19 Prevention, Containment and Treatment) Regulations 2020 which give the Minister of Health and Child Care authority to make draconian regulations to control the spread of the novel coronavirus.
The Health Minister is also empowered to have designated medical officers order the compulsory testing, quarantining, isolation, treatment and detention evacuation of anyone who is exposed to an infection or is confirmed as infected for 48 hours or until they have been formally cleared to be free of infection if this takes longer to do.
The Minister and designated medical officers can also order the evacuation of any building for up to 24 hours where those exposed to the risk of infection may have gathered.
The regulations are valid until May 20 although they then may be extended a month at a time. The regulations follow the death of a Zimbabwean 30-year-old journalist Zororo Makamba who succumbed to the virus on Monday.
They also come at a time when one of the 15 tests done on Tuesday came out positive with reports suggesting that those tested were mostly contacts of Makamba who is the first coronavirus death in Zimbabwe.
The regulations also come after President Emmerson Mnangagwa announced a cocktail of measures premised at reducing the spread and transmission of the virus.
More: The Herald