Mashudu Netsianda, Senior Reporter
GOVERNMENT has relaxed Covid-19 lockdown regulations by lifting the curfew and extending operating hours for businesses in the hospitality industry.
The curfew, which was part of lockdown measures aimed at containing the spread of Covid-19, ran from 12 midnight to 5.30am while restaurants were required to close at 10pm.
The latest development follows a decline in the number of Covid-19 cases.
The country is recording an average of 97 new cases per day, compared to 108 new cases the previous week.
However, other measures, which President Mnangagwa announced in his last address to the nation in December last year remain in force.
These include that all Covid-19-related funerals should strictly be supervised by Ministry of Health and Child Care environmental health officers and technicians while the number and behaviour of all persons attending any gathering must observe and comply with World Health Organisation (WHO) protocols.
Others are that no liquor should be consumed at bottlestores until further notice while nightclubs and bars are supposed to admit vaccinated clients only.
In his post-Cabinet briefing yesterday, Information Communication Technology, Postal and Courier Services Minister, Dr Jenfan Muswere said despite the relaxation of some of the lockdown measures, the implementation of all Covid-19 public health and social measures will continue to be strengthened.
“Accordingly, Cabinet resolved to relax some Covid-19 measures and regulations as follows: that the business hours for the hospitality industry be extended to now cover the period 8am to 3am hours the following day; that, while enforcement of Covid-19 regulations must continue, the curfew which is currently running from 12 midnight to 5.30am has been lifted,” he said.
“The implementation of all Covid-19 public health and social measures must continue to be strengthened.”
As of Monday, the country’s cumulative Covid-19 cases stood at 254 919, with 247 649 recoveries.
The recovery rate was 97 percent, with 1 734 active cases having been reported.
The number of new Covid-19 cases continued to decrease, with 676 cases having been recorded, compared to the 758 recorded the previous week, marking a eleven percent decline.
“An average of 97 new cases was recorded per day, compared to 108 new cases the previous week.
Furthermore, a total of 34 Covid-19-related new admissions were recorded during the week, compared to 48 the previous week,” said Dr Muswere.
“No patients were admitted to the intensive care unit.
This indicates that the Covid-19 pandemic remains under control, as it has been for some months now.”
In terms of the ongoing national vaccination programme, as at Monday, a total of 6 264 867 first doses of the Covid-19 vaccine had been administered, while 4 602 713 people had received their second dose, and 856 440 their third dose.
This translates to a national coverage of 55,7 percent, compared to the 55,6 percent recorded the previous week.
“Cabinet calls upon all citizens that have not been vaccinated to present themselves for vaccination at centres nearest to them,” said Dr Muswere.