Zimbabwe Lockdown: Day 533 – WCoZ Situation Report

533 days of the COVID-19 Lockdown, and as of 12th of September 2021, the Ministry of Health and Child Care reported that the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases had increased to 126 269 after 49 new cases, all local cases, were recorded. The highest case tally was recorded in Masvingo with 9 cases in each Province. We note that the Hospitalisation rate as of 15:00hrs on 11th September 2021 was 151 hospitalised cases: 9 new admissions, 31 asymptomatic cases, 72 mild-to-moderate cases, 34 severe cases and 14 cases in Intensive Care Units.

Active cases went down to 2 939. The total number of recoveries went up to 118 792 increasing by 137 recoveries. The recovery rate remains at 94%. A total of 8 395 people received their 1st dose of the vaccine. The cumulative number of the 1st dose vaccinated now stands at 2 835 148. A total of 14 130 recipients received their second dose bringing the cumulative number of 2nd dose recipients to 1 863 136. The death toll went up to 4 538 after 2 new deaths were recorded.

Critical Emerging Issue

Vigilance and safety protocols in schools

We continue to highlight monitoring reports nationwide indicating a significant drop in adherence to masking up, and in some cases, improper use of masks by learners in schools. We are therefore concerned with infection control and safety protocols for learners.

  • We urge a robust campaign and awareness-raising on vaccination eligibility of 14 – 17-year children. This should include adequate, accurate data on the anticipated side effects and other surrounding issues.
  • We amplify our calls for an inclusive vaccine roll-out which ensures vaccine equity and equality amongst urban and rural young populace.
  • We continue to recommend refresher information dissemination on proper use and disposal of masks in schools.
  • We continue to call for adherence to physical distancing, wearing regular temperature checks in schools and in public transport utilised by learners and teaching staff.

Outstanding issues

Social Protection mechanisms during COVID-19

We continue to note with concern the socio-economic impact of COVID-19 pandemic on lives and livelihoods. 

We continue to amplify our concern on the socio-economic impacts of COVID-19, particularly that the majority of women in Zimbabwe and women-led households are facing the biggest impact in food security, income loss, and caregiving burdens. We emphasize the need for prioritization of women’s access to social safety nets during COVID-19, taking due cognisance of the fact that a majority of women in the informal sector, such as the cross-border traders, have suffered severe loss of livelihoods. Noting that Parliament is currently seized with the matter, we amplify the following demands:

  • Resuscitation of the COVID-19 support scheme. 
  • Adequate funding of National Social Protection Policy Framework.
  • Expansion of social safety nets and offset economic impacts for COVID-19.
  • Provision of support for households who are no longer able to sustain themselves due to loss of livelihoods, especially women-led households.

Source: Women’s Coalition of Zimbabwe