Churches call for calm, unity of purpose


THE Zimbabwe Council of Churches (ZCC) has called for calm and unity of purpose amid growing concerns and anxiety over the deadly coronavirus in the country.

This comes as the government has declared a 21-day lockdown which starts today.
The nationwide lockdown will restrict people to their homes, only permitting excursions for buying food or health emergencies.

All this is taking place as Zimbabwe has recorded its first death from the seven confirmed cases of the coronavirus at a time doctors and nurses have embarked on industrial action in protest over, among other things, lack of protective clothing and adequate equipment to fight the pandemic.

ZCC secretary general Kenneth Mtata told the Daily News that panicking and shifting blame rather than maintaining unity of purpose will worsen the situation and result in the spread of the deadly virus.

“In these days of coronavirus the church and the people of Zimbabwe will be confronted by many challenges as how to manage the situation and come out strong. Some Christians may even be doubtful if the scripture meant it when it said that if you drink poison or if bitten by a snake it shall not kill you.

“In the next few weeks we may be confronted by many challenges including the death of many people and with this in mind some have already begun panicking. The church needs to rise above this and stop panicking because that will not solve the situation; adhering to expert guidelines is what will help mitigate the situation,” Mtata said.

The coronavirus epidemic has affected 198 countries and resulted in the deaths of over 31 000 people while over 668 000 others have been infected.

Mtata added that the church, civil society organisations, government, the private sector and the public should unite to curb the spread of the virus. He further called on the church to propagate proper advice from health authorities meant to stall the pandemic.

“Let us continue following expert advice on the preventative measures to reduce the spread of the pandemic,” he said.

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