THE Covid-19 pandemic has hit hard on Zanu PF, forcing the ruling party to contemplate holding its October annual conference virtually if the number of infections and fatalities in the country continue to surge.
Last year, Zanu PF had to indefinitely postpone the conference that was scheduled for Mashonaland Central Province in December in order to mitigate the spread of the respiratory disease.
With a third wave of the pandemic looming, Zanu PF secretary for administration Obert Mpofu, pictured, on Friday said that the ruling party was bracing for the worst case scenario, which might see the conference being held online.
“The Covid-19 third wave is upon us as evidenced by the increasing infection rate and fatalities. The lockdown measures are clear indications that Covid-19 is serious.
“The national people’s conference preparations are on track and we have a plan B for the worst case scenario to host it virtually. The conference’s coordination committee should now meet constantly to come up with modalities for the virtual conference,” Mpofu told the party’s policy conference.
He said the Communist Party of China (CPC) had pledged to provide the virtual equipment to link all provinces.
“The Chinese embassy will ensure that the equipment is handed over to us and the party’s Information Communication Technology and the Information departments should collaborate to ensure that the equipment is harnessed,” he said.
The party has previously stated that all the delegates and supporters would be required to get vaccinated against Coivid-19 first if the annual conference set for Bindura is to be hosted physically.
In a letter dated June 25, the party’s secretary for Health, David Parirenyatwa, instructed all the 10 provincial chairpersons and their secretaries for health to ensure that conference delegates are immunised by the end of next month.
“In view of the upcoming People’s Conference in October 2021, Bindura, all party members who will be attending this conference will need to have been vaccinated against Covid-19 before they can attend the conference,” Parirenyatwa said.
The country has to date vaccinated 782 698 people against a target of 10 million, which constitutes about 60 percent of the population.
It also comes as last week President Emmerson Mnangagwa announced new Covid-19 restrictions which include a dawn to dusk curfew and a ban on intercity travel, among other restrictions.
Meanwhile, Mpofu also said Mnangagwa would address 500 political parties next week during a summit hosted by the CPC as it celebrates its 100 years of existence
“On the 6th of July the party will be participating in the global virtual summit of world political parties hosted by the CPC … Mnangagwa and president Xi Jinping will be addressing the summit which will be attended by 500 political parties,” Mpofu said.