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Police increase lockdown patrols in Midlands

by Staff Reporter
13 Jul 2021 at 08:58hrs | Views
POLICE have increased patrols in the Midlands where a lot of people are violating Government lockdown measures, to curb the spread of Covid-19.

Police are ensuring that all gatherings except funerals are banned and compliance is strictly adhered to.

Mourners are implored to stick to the stipulated figure of 30 people and observe Covid-19 protocols.

In Gweru, Kwekwe, Zvishavane - only people who had business in the city centres were allowed to enter as police mounted roadblocks along all roads leading to the CBD.

In Gweru motorists coming from Athlone, Northlea, Ridgemont suburbs using the Harare highway, for example, were forced to park their vehicles at an open space near Metro Peach Wholesalers.

Scores of residents on foot who failed to show reason or cause as to why they should be in the city centre were turned away.

Motorists complained that they took an hour to cover a distance of less than 5km as the police took their time screening vehicles and people who were supposed to enter the city centre.

A Chronicle news crew witnessed scores of vendors, osiphatheleni and other people being rounded up in the Gweru city centre for allegedly violating lockdown regulations.

President Mnangagwa at the end of June imposed a Level 4 lockdown for two weeks, which saw the suspension of intercity movement, except for distribution of medication and other essentials.

This follows a surge in Covid-19 cases across the country since the onset of the third wave.

Prior to the pronouncement of the lockdown, many areas, especially in cities declared hotspots across the country, had already been placed under localised lockdowns as a measure to control the virus.

National police spokesperson Assistant Commissioner Paul Nyathi confirmed the development saying patrols have been intensified.

He said they have been concerned that some members of the public were disregarding the lockdown measures by continuing to gather around the city centre and shopping malls in towns like Gweru.

"The Zimbabwe Republic Police advises the public that the enforcement of Covid-19 lockdown measures have been intensified like what is happening in Gweru. Patrols, blitz and monitoring are being done to ensure that beer halls bars and night clubs remain closed for example and people who are supposed to be in the CBD will be allowed and others will be turned away so that we decongest such places to curb the surge in Covid-19 infections," said Asst Comm Nyathi.

In an unrelated incident, a 22-year-old gold panner died after allegedly falling into a disused mine shaft at Wanderer mine in Shurugwi on Friday.

Tinashe Makusha of Hwede Village under Chief Zimuto in Masvingo - Midlands provincial police spokesperson Inspector Emmanuel Mahoko said - was walking from Vital Tuckshop along a road when he slipped and fell into a shaft of about 60 meters deep.

"Two mine workers who were in another shaft heard the noise and suspected that a neighbouring mine was collapsing. They later checked and discovered Makusha's body at the bottom of the shaft. The matter was reported to the police who attended the scene and retrieved the body," he said.

Insp Mahoko said according to the Mines and Minerals Act miners are required to rehabilitate or cover their pits after accomplishing activities.

"Fencing off work areas, tunnels and shafts to guard against people and animals from falling in is required. On the other hand, the public should report whenever they discover dangerous shafts for measures to be put in place. Also they should desist from entering disused mines as they may be affected by dangerous gases," he said.

Source - Chronicle

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