Wednesday, 23 June 2021

COVID-19 HITS TWO PRISONS

A combined 60 cases of Covid-19 have been reported at Bindura and Mt Darwin prisons, with two prison officers among the positive cases.

Bindura Prison reported 41 cases and 19 at Mt Darwin Prison. This emerged at an emergency Covid-19 meeting held at Bindura Hospital, and the provincial taskforce team made arrangements to assess the situation at the two prisons.

Provincial medical director, Dr Clemence Tshuma, said Mt Darwin had been a Covid-19 hotspot in the last few weeks. Staff and inmates at the prison are yet to be vaccinated but Dr Tshuma said they would be prioritised soon.

“About 15 percent of people in the province have been vaccinated during the second phase while 30 percent were vaccinated during the first phase,” said Dr Tshuma.  

“Those vaccinated but testing positive to Covid-19 are showing mild or no symptoms of the disease, an indication that the vaccine works.  “We need to encourage people to get vaccinated.”

Minister of State for Provincial Affairs and Devolution, Monica Mavhunga, said complacency was the main driver of the surge in Covid-19 cases.  She said districts in border areas, including Kanyemba in Mbire, were vulnerable. Kanyemba shares a border with Zambia, which is presently battling Covid-19 a resurgence in cases.

Some communities in Kanyemba seek medical services and shopping in Luangwa district of Zambia.

Minister Mavhunga implored the provincial Covid-19 taskforce to go out of their way to raise awareness in communities close to borders. “Extreme caution must be taken at Bindura and Mvurwi auction floors to protect our farmers.

“Use traditional leaders and political structures to raise awareness and ensure people are on guard. Security forces must increase enforcement of regulations,” she said.

Assistant Inspector Ngonidzashe Hove told the meeting that police are intensifying surveillance, patrols and roadblocks.

“We are having patrols at Kitsiyatota and Jumbo mine to clear the places of scores of illegal miners. Soon we will patrol along Mazowe River up to Mukaradzi and Mt Darwin,” he said. Herald

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