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AfricaRIOT/PROTESTZimbabwe

Zim responds to protests says ‘any political posturing is not helpful’

By Almot Maqolo

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Zimbabwe says any call for mass action at this time is an unnecessary stoking of Covid-19 infection risk to the nation. This follows social media messages from pressure groups calling for mass action on 31 July 2020 to denounce corruption and poor standards of living in the country.

The southern African nation is in the grips of a worsening economic crisis characterised by soaring inflation, stagnant wages and shortages of fuel and other essentials. Information, Publicity and Broadcasting Services Minister Senator Monica Mutsvangwa warned the people not to get complacent with the coronavirus crisis.

On 1 July, Zimbabwe recorded 14 new cases, on the 4th the number shot to 73 new cases, and Wednesday numbers jumped to 98. “It is in view of this heightened increment in infection cases that I urge the public to continue to adhere to the lockdown regulations and practice preventatives and protective behavior. Government is urging each and one of us against complacency,” she said.

“In the same vein, we want to emphasize that the second republic embraces democratic principles and is the midst of far reaching reforms which deepen and widen the democratic space.” Mutsvangwa said the country is in the midst of an existential threat.

“Any political posturing is not helpful. We therefore call upon public figures and political players to act responsibly with the safety of Zimbabweans in mind. “This country cannot afford adventurism in the midst of this threat to our very existence,” she said.

This week Zimbabwe passed the 100 day mark from the day President Emmerson Mnangagwa addressed the nation informing that the country would be under a 21 days total lockdown. At that time Zimbabwe had recorded five positive cases of Covid-19 and had lost one of its young persons to the virus. 110 days later the southern African nation’s positive cases stand at 885, with 206 recoveries and 9 deaths.


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