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Returnees stranded, cite transport money as major challenge

by commuadmin
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CommuTalk Reporter

GWERU – Some of the returnees who were repatriated from South Africa and Botswana stationed at Gweru Polytechnic and Mkoba Teacher’s College have been released after the mandatory screening and testing although some remain stuck since they have no bus-fare.

CommuTalk is informed that more that 80 people stationed from both Gweru Polytechnic and Mkoba Teacher’s College were yesterday (Sunday 24 May) allowed to go home after testing negative.

Most of these returnees are supposedly stranded as they had not received transport funds from government as was expected.

CommuTalk tried to access comment from returnees but was denied access at Mkoba Teacher’s College.

A government employee who spoke to this publication on condition of anonymity also revealed that although many are being sent home, returnees are still being received at the facilities.

This is regardless of the fact that the facilities are tertiary educational facilities that might be used by returning final year students on 1 June 2020; a date government has set for re-opening of schools to final year students.

Last week, a pregnant lady died at Mkoba Teacher’s College quarantine centre and government has since said the lady was Covid-19 negative. The late lady’s family has also confirmed that she had been prompted to travel back home because of ill-health.

No official comment on cause of death has been given as yet.

Gweru Polytechnic received 122 returnees while Mkoba Teacher’s College received more than 230 returnees upon commencement of repatriation.

Many South African based Zimbabweans have opted repatriation citing unbearable living conditions. Those from Botswana, while appreciating measures taken to curb the spread of Covid-19 have criticised the government of Botswana over forced repatriations.

Meanwhile, nearly 100 returning Zimbabweans who were quarantined at different centres across the country as part of measures to control the spread of coronavirus have escaped, raising fears they could jeopardise efforts by Government to control the disease.

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