FIVE thousand people werearrested in three days this past week for violating Covid-19 regulations by not wearing masks.
This comes after the government eased the national lockdown and authorised the resumption of business operations and free movement of people subject to strict adherence to prescribed health protocols.
“The ZRP has noted with great concern an increase in the number of people being arrested for failure to wear face masks countrywide since the relaxation of strict lockdown measures by the government.
“1 186 people were arrested on March 1, 1 965 on March 2 and 2 122 on March 3. Members of the public are advised to observe all health and safety protocols aimed at reducing the spread of the deadly Covid-19,” the police said.
The rising number of arrests shows a disregard in observing Covid-19 protocols aimed at curtailing the spread of the lethal virus. This comes as health authorities have warned against complacency which they say could trigger a third wave of the virus.
Respected health expert Solwayo Ngwenya, who is the Mpilo Hospital acting chief executive officer, lauded the government’s decision to ease the lockdown but urged the public to remain cautious and comply with Covid-19 regulations.
Senior Hospital Doctors Association (SHDA) president, Shingai Nyaguse-Chiurunge concurred with Ngwenya, saying the relaxation of lockdown protocols should not be a passport for citizens to behave irresponsibly. The second wave was vicious, claiming the lives of prominent people, among them Cabinet ministers Sibusiso Moyo and Biggie Matiza.
This saw the government imposing a stricter lockdown that restricted movement and business in the country as a measure to contain the spread.
Zimbabwe recently began Covid-19 vaccinations after receiving 200 000 Sinopharm doses from China. Other nations have also availed vaccines to the nation which have been set for phase two