Zimbabwe Lockdown: Day 443 – WCoZ Situation Report

443 days of the COVID-19 Lockdown, and as of 14th of June 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care reported that, the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases had increased to 40 077 after 118 new cases were reported, all are local. The highest case tally was recorded in Mashonaland West with 38 cases. Localised lockdown communities in effect in Kariba, Karoi and Kwekwe.

We note the flagging of the following areas as COVID-19hotspots namely; Masvingo District, Chiredzi in Masvingo Province, and in Bulawayo Nkulumane, Emakhandeni and Northern Suburbs.

We note that the Hospitalisation rate as at 15:00hrs on the 13th of June 2021 were 77 hospitalised cases, 15 asymptomatic cases, 49 mild to moderate cases, 11 severe cases and 2 cases in Intensive Care Units. We note several Hospitals in Harare, Matebeleland South and Masvingo had not reported. Active cases went up to 1 415. The total number of recoveries went up to 37 027 increasing by 23 recoveries. The recovery rate went down marginally from 93% to 92%. A total of 421 people received their 1st doses of vaccine. The cumulative number of the 1st dose vaccinated now stands at 693 568.  A total of 724 recipients received their second dose bringing the cumulative number of 2nd dose recipients to 414 635. The death toll goes up to 1 635 after 3 new deaths were recorded.

Critical emerging issues

Updates of cases in localised lockdown communities

We note with concern that COVID-19 cases in areas with localised lockdowns are not being directly reported daily in line with the original commitment by government. We reiterate that central to securing the support of the public is a shift in communications which include making citizens more knowledgeable about matters in their communities directly to empower them and to advise them to adjust behaviour according to their local risk profiles.

  • We continue to call upon government to upgrade its approach to availing critical information, timeously, to the public, regarding the pandemic to secure direct influence on behavioural change.
  • We remind the Government, in particular the COVID-19 taskforce teams at all levels, that, when people and communities know more, they can do better  to effect positive change.

Critical Outstanding Issue

COVID-19 fatigue among new restrictions

We note, with alarm, the complacency that has set in among all layers of Zimbabwean society in regards to COVID-19 measures. We note with concern that today the first day of the increased restrictions the reports from our community monitors continue to indicate a broad based trend of lack of urgency and complacency in adhering to face mask wearing, frequent sanitisation and keeping of distance. We note further that compounding the problem appears to be weak messaging to effect change of behaviour in fatigued citizens and communities. We note with alarm the relaxed approach to enforcement of recently announced restrictions broadly.

  • We call for fresh and invested messaging and public health communication on the third wave in Zimbabwe and an urge  for community behavioural change immediately to stem a potential crisis.
  • We call for full enforcement of lockdown measures, respectful of human rights and freedoms,  in socio-economic institutions and centres including stores and markets.
  • We continue to call for the strict implementation of public health safety protocols in the public transport.
  • We call for community testing in places of localised lockdowns even where the outbreaks occur in what may appear as a contained community.

Source: Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe (WCoZ)