March 31, 2020

Covid-19 headache for Zimbabwe

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Mirirai Nsingo

Zimbabwe’s health officials fear the 13 000 citizens who came into the country from South Africa last week could cause more trouble and change the face of the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Southern African country saw 13 000 residents returning into the country before the commencement of South Africa’s lock down that came into effect on March 26.

Harare City’s Health director, Dr Prosper Chonzi, says this could cause trouble for Zimbabwe and change the epicentre of the pandemic.

“This is a cohort that we are worried about, 13 000 people coming from South Africa ahead of its lockdown. And these people are all over Zimbabwe and this could brew up a storm for us and change the face of the epidemic.

“Currently Harare is the epicentre of the epidemic but with these new dynamics, this can complicate everything. With these dynamics all this might change,” Dr Chonzi told ZTN.

The Health official added that they had engaged provincial medical directors to tackle this challenge that has the potential to cause havoc for Zimbabwe.

“We have engaged provincial medical directors to work with teams and trace the 13 000 but as you can see this is a mammoth task that can complicate our response,” he said.

Zimbabwe, currently on lockdown, has to date recorded eight cases of Covid-19 with one death.

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