1. ZIMBABWE’S RESPONSE TO THE COVID-19 OUTBREAK
The Minister of Defence and War Veterans Affairs, as Chairperson of the COVID-19 Ad-Hoc Inter-Ministerial Task Force, presented an update report on the country’s response to the COVID-19 outbreak, which was adopted by Cabinet.
Cabinet was advised that Zimbabwe had recorded a cumulative 9 714 confirmed COVID-19 cases, 8 470 recoveries, and 275 deaths as at 27 November, 2020. The national recovery rate stands at 87% percent. Eight thousand two hundred and thirty-nine (8 239) of the COVID-19 positive cases are local transmissions. Of concern, is the increase in the number of new cases detected, from 281 recorded in week 46 to 594 in week 47 following the re-opening of schools. In order to control the spread of COVID-19 in schools the following measures are being implemented: intensification of the supervision and inspection of boarding school facilities; providing potable water to 48 schools in Bulawayo which are in dire need of the essential commodity; strengthening of public health response measures in affected schools; supporting all education institutions to fully implement COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures; and implementing COVID-19 protective and preventive measures in the social spaces beyond school premises. However, the media is urged to report responsibly on the situation prevailing in primary and secondary schools and seek information from the Ministry of Primary and Secondary Education and Health and Child Care on issues of interest. This will avoid the undue alarm and despondency caused by the uncoordinated reportage witnessed since the re-opening of schools.