GWERU – The Midlands Province has intensified the lockdown in supposed fear of protests against corruption slatted for July 31 by the opposition.
The Provincial COVID-19 taskforce however says the tightened lockdown regulations are as a result of spiking COVID-19 cases in the Province which saw 35 workers at Zvishavane hospital and three employees at Claybank Clininc testing positive for the virus through local transmissions.
The strict regulations also follow exposé by local media showing how some night clubs had resumed operations amid the fear of spreading the Corona virus.
Observation by CommuTalk gathered that most shops were forced to close today while scores of people had to find their way home on foot since transport was not available back home.
The army has also manned shortcut roads used by pedestrians to access different locations.
Long queues for motorists wanting to access the CBD have also been a common site since Monday as police has become strict towards turning back home drivers without required documentation.
Raids have also been enforced with a recent raid at Avenues bar resulting in arrest of Gweru’s well known socialites.
Chairperson of the Midlands province Covid-19 provincial taskforce, Senator Larry Mavhima who is also the provincial minister of state is on record saying his team will leave no stone unturned in enforcing lockdown regulations.
“We had realised that people were now in the habit of breaking these lockdown rules. We as Midlands are making it clear that we will abide by the rules as enunciated by His Excellency.
“Therefore we are saying you need to come into town if there is real need to come into town. There is no other motive other than to save lives; there is no other motive other than to stop the spread of the pandemic and the numbers don’t lie,” Mavhima said.
Meanwhile, Gweru has been named a COVID-19 hotspot, joining Harare and Bulawayo as local transmissions have been on the rise.
Of particular concern is that cumulative number of confirmed local COVID-19 cases has increased by 112 percent from 791 to 1 675 during the past week. Most of the local cases are in Bulawayo (667), Harare (601) and Gweru (168).