President Emmerson Mnangagwa effectively ruled out a return to a hard lockdown during deliberations on the second coronavirus wave in Cabinet.
The Zimbabwe Independent reported official sources saying the chairperson of the ad hoc COVID-19 taskforce, Defence minister Oppah Muchinguri-Kashiri’s report in Cabinet of new coronavirus infections painted a grim picture on the situation currently obtaining in the country.
Muchinguri reportedly said the country was in grave danger due to the exponential rise in coronavirus infections as 594 cases had been recorded in the previous week, including in schools. An official is quoted as having said:
Some ministers actually proposed that there should be a return to the time when we had a stringent lockdown as countries in Europe are doing.
South Africa has also indicated that as things stand, another tough lockdown would be necessary.
But such proposals were shot down immediately by the President who indicated that what was needed was to ensure more vigilant enforcement of the existing control measures.
Mnangagwa initially declared a nationwide lockdown on March 27 as a way of trying to contain the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the new coronavirus which causes the disease called COVID-19.
The lockdown has gradually been eased and while the measures still exist on paper, at least, business has virtually returned to normalcy in the country, with people crowding at market places, without observing social distancing and bars opening well into the wee hours.