HARARE – President Emmerson Mnangagwa extended Zimbabwe’s Covid-19 lockdown by another 14 days, further delaying the re-opening of schools which were due to re-open for the second term on June 28.
In a televised address, Mnangagwa said Zimbabwe is aiming to vaccinate one million people against Covid-19 during the lockdown extension.
Faced with rising infections and deaths, Mnangagwa on June 29 introduced tough lockdown measures that included a dusk to dawn curfew and curbs on inter-city travel.
Mnangagwa said infections were rising at “an alarming rate” as the more transmissible Delta variant spreads locally.
On Monday, Zimbabwe declared 2,661 new infections, slightly lower than the all-time record of 2,683 recorded on July 9.
Mnangagwa said 80 percent of Zimbabwe’s new infections were due to the super-contagious Delta variant which originally surfaced in India.
Zimbabwe has to date recorded 70,426 infections, a quarter of them in the past two weeks and 2,236 deaths, official data showed. More than 900,000 Zimbabweans have received a first dose of the four Covid-19 vaccines in use presently: China’s Sinopharm and Sinovac; India’s Covaxin and Sputnik V from Russia.
Zimbabwe received its single biggest shipment of two million Covid-19 doses last week that it hopes will boost its vaccine drive. It expects another 3.5 million shots by the end of July. – Reuters