Walter Nyamukondiwa Kariba Bureau
The Kariba district Covid-19 taskforce is fretting over an upsurge in the number of cases in the resort town with interventions lined up including swooping on houseboat gigs, bottle stores and shebeens.
Residents now fear that the dreaded third wave of the global pandemic could lead to imposition of a localised lockdown which will affect businesses.
This comes amid fears that Kariba could this year experience lower than usual temperatures this winter raising chances of the diseases spreading widely.
In a notice, Kariba District Covid-19 taskforce chairperson Dr Godwin Muza said residents should adhere to preventive protocols.
“We are now experiencing a third wave of the Covid 19 and with Kariba winter expected to be much colder, these figures are likely to go up if we do not practice social distancing, masking up, sanitising among other preventive measures,” said Dr Muza.
“The district taskforce is now on high alert and as part of this, a meeting held yesterday resolved that Kariba municipality must enforce Covid19 regulations which have been relaxed.”
Dr Muza said regulations at market places, shops, funerals, churches, bars, houseboats, extra lessons and private schools should be enforced.
Awareness campaigns in the community have been lined up while police have been instructed to enforce the Covid-19 curfew as residents had stopped putting on masks, social distancing and sanitising.
By yesterday afternoon, police had started arresting those who were not putting on masks while an emergency meeting has been lined up for proprietors of liquor outlets.
“An emergency meeting of the Rapid Response Team to be held, while houseboats should stop live music shows forthwith. The District Development Coordinator (DDC) should meet the pastors’ fraternity and educate them on the need to adhere to Covid19 regulations,” said Dr Muza.
Adhoc visits to churches during services have also been lined up while council and police should enforce limits of mourners at funerals.
In line with Government’s thrust to achieve herd immunity, Kariba Town is targeting to have 15 000 people immunised. The variant currently affecting residents is not yet known as gene sequencing has not yet been undertaken.
“Due to a spike in Covid-19 cases, non-compliance to Covid 19 regulations and low vaccination figures, we expect that Kariba can be put on a localised lockdown,” he said.