“Their Voices Matter” Community Responses to Covid-19 Measures – Lockdown Week 1 Report

Introduction

The world has been turned upside down by the COVID19 pandemic. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has since pointed out that the world has recorded more than 680 000 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in 203 countries as of 29 March 2020. Italy, China, Spain and United States recorded more than 40 000 deaths and the numbers are increasing daily. In the first 3 months of the pandemic, the global economy has lost around USD 3,2 trillion.

Economists predict that if the pandemic is not stopped by August 2020, the world will plunge into a recession much much worse than 1929. This catastrophe plunging the industrialised world into darkness will do more damage for fragile economies in Africa. With 2 million Chinese people living in Africa, the bridge for the pandemic to find its way to the continent and to Zimbabwe at high speed is set. In Zimbabwe, the health care system is already in ICU.

If the pandemic comes with the same viciousness, the impact will be unimaginable. By the time of the compilation of this report, Zimbabwe has reported 9 cases with one death.

On Monday 30 March 2020, the government decreed a 21 day lock-down through SI 2020-083 Public Health (COVID-19 Prevention, Containment and Treatment) (National Lockdown) Order, 2020.

In this fight against COVID 19, community voices matter. This report captures the community responses to these measures in the first week of the lockdown and the subsequent human rights implications.

These responses are documented with the hope that they will be able to influence the decisions about COVID 19 and how measures to fight it are implemented in an approach that is not only sensitive to human rights but rather in way that are proactive to the rights of the most vulnerable.

Download full multi-media report here (836KB PDF)

Source: Zimbabwe Human Rights Association (ZimRights)